South African incubator Sw7 has announced a partnership with UK governmental department UK Trade & Industry (UKTI), under which a group of South African technology entrepreneurs will participate in a “Trade Mission” to the UK this November.
The Trade Mission is targeted at technology businesses that either want to base themselves from the UK or are ready to expand to the UK and use it as a base to address the UK and global markets.
The selected group of entrepreneurs will spend a week in the UK in November, to coincide with the Innovate 2015 event to be held in London.
During the first two days of the trip, the South African delegation will participate in the Innovate 2015 conference, and for the remainder of the time they will connect with local investors, businesses, innovation hubs, accelerators and incubators in the sector.
“Whilst this is the first event we have done like this, we are looking to see if we can do some transactions. An ideal outcome for us would be some commercial transactions as well as laying the foundation for a number of businesses to set themselves up in the UK,” said Keith Jones, co-founder of Sw7.
Jones said the mission is also a first step in building South Africa’s reputation as a strong player in the global tech marketplace.
“If we want to position South Africa as the technology gateway to Africa and the emerging markets, we need to be seen as a strong and viable player in the technology sector. South Africa has the potential to become an emerging markets technology hub, to do this means we have to connect with the global markets, innovators and investors in their markets and not wait for them to come to us,” he said.
The UKTI will cover access to the event for the attendees, but businesses will have to pay for their own travel and expenses.