Duke hails 3,000 jobs cre­ated by his Pitch@Palace tech ini­tia­tive

Yorkshire Post - - NEWS -

THE DUKE of York’s Pitch@ Palace ini­tia­tive to boost the UK’s tech start-ups has sparked £800m of in­vest­ment in the fledg­ling busi­nesses, Prince An­drew has said.

The plat­form given to en­trepreneurs to pitch their in­no­va­tive ideas to a panel of ex­perts has helped at­tract in­vestors and seen 3,000 jobs cre­ated.

Speak­ing at the lat­est Pitch@ Palace fi­nal at Buck­ing­ham Palace on Thurs­day night, An­drew said: “If I think back to 2014 when we first launched Pitch@Palace, I don’t think I could have imag­ined we’d be here to­day.”

He added: “Pitch@Palace is a mu­tu­ally sup­port­ive op­er­at­ing sys­tem for am­bi­tious young busi­nesses seek­ing to scale and grow, and we are now firmly placed in the growth econ­omy.

“To date, we’ve seen nearly 50,000 en­trepreneurs ap­ply to be­come part of our ‘clan’ which is re­mark­able.”

An­drew founded the project to con­nect start-ups with in­vestors, men­tors and in­dus­try fig­ures and he men­tioned how the project’s an­nual re­port high­lighted the large in­vest­ment fig­ure.

He said: “We’ve held just un­der 100 events, and have 687 alumni who’ve cre­ated for them­selves just over £800 mil­lion of eco­nomic ac­tiv­ity into th­ese busi­nesses.

“Most im­por­tantly, we’ve cre­ated over 3,000 jobs, but what I’m most sur­prised by is that we’re run­ning at a 96.5 per cent sur­vival rate, which I’m led to be­lieve is un­usual for the start-up and scale-up world.”

The value of Pitch has been stud­ied by the En­trepreneur­ship Cen­tre of Cam­bridge Uni­ver­sity’s Judge Busi­ness School. It found the ini­tia­tive in­creased the chances of en­trepreneurs re­ceiv­ing fund­ing, es­pe­cially those liv­ing out­side the golden tri­an­gle of Lon­don-Ox­ford-Cam­bridge, it boosted the pro­fes­sion­al­ism of start-ups and im­proved their ta­lent at­trac­tion.

Win­ners from Pitch@Palace 10.0 in­cluded Stasher, which is build­ing one of the world’s largest ur­ban stor­age net­works. Its plat­form con­nects trav­ellers with ho­tels and shops where they can store bags, leav­ing them free to ex­plore.

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