North East Cyber Security Innovation Centres

The North East is set to get two cyber security Innovation Centres following Government money. Cluster organisation CyberNorth has partnered with Atom Bank and floe to host fledgling cyber security businesses.

Business Live (Newcastle) is reporting that two cyber security pilot centres are to be established in the North East thanks to Government funding. Money from the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology will allow CyberNorth – the regional cyber security cluster – to set up two Innovation Centres intended to help pioneering early-stage businesses establish themselves in the sector.

The membership organisation has teamed up with Atom Bank and co-working space provider floe, which runs offices in Newcastle city centre’s Maybrook House, to host businesses as part of a six-month package of support, based in Newcastle and Durham.

It is hoped the two centres will provide the proof of concept needed to roll out subsequent locations which can offer a similar mix of business incubation, free or subsidised accommodation and hands-on skills development and support. CyberNorth, which is comprised of around 900 members, boasts many cyber security companies but believed the regional sector further, untapped potential.

Phil Jackman, director of CyberNorth said: “We are delighted to have secured funding from the DSIT, this is a ground-breaking moment for cyber security in the region. As a catalyst of support in the North East, the aim of CyberNorth is to bring the cyber sector together, whilst championing the region nationally. The roll-out of the ‘physical’ Innovation Centres is a big step and see our plans and collaborations with partners across the North East build further momentum.

“The ministerial visit to the region last year was key and enabled the minister to see first-hand the challenges being faced, and the potential to grow the cyber security and digital sector to unlock new jobs and investment across the region. We are very excited to put the wheels in motion for this new venture with our partners Atom Bank and floe.”

Jon Holden, chief information security officer at Atom Bank, said: “Our support for the innovation centres, rooted in the vibrant cities of Newcastle and Durham, is not just an investment in the community and technology, but a steadfast commitment to a safer digital future for all of the UK. It’s an absolute pleasure to be part of CyberNorth and support the vast cyber security talent in the region. We are not only nurturing local talent, transforming raw potential into the new defenders of cyberspace but also celebrating the unique fusion of tradition and technology that our region has to offer.”

Hamish Rutherford, director at floe said: “We are delighted to work with CyberNorth to support this exciting programme in the region. We look forward to hosting a range of new and innovative businesses at our accessible city centre premises to help nurture the next generation of cyber security talent.”

CyberNorth’s Operational Group includes representation from the likes of Northumbria University, Virgin Money and Vertu Motors. It is also part of national body UKC3, the UK Cyber Cluster Collaboration, and works to understand cyber security capabilities in the northern regions and ways to develop them.

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