John Chambers, chief executive at Cisco, yesterday took part in a meeting with the prime minister and promised substantial investment in East London’s ‘tech city’.
Chambers said he hoped Cisco’s own spending would encourage investment in the area from a raft of other companies.
Cisco will create two centres of innovation, in Shoreditch and at the Olympic Park in Stratford. It will also award five cash prizes each year to small companies.
The Tech City initiative was an “excellent” example of how the government can “spur innovation and growth”, Chambers said.
Prime minister David Cameron said that with the Tech City, Britain would build “one of the world’s great technology centres” that would also create “many jobs”.
Cisco aims to help attract around £310 million of investment to the Tech City, largely by making the first step and investing itself. But it did not give specific details of how it will achieve the plans.
Observers noted that the Tech City area could also become the home of ‘enterprise zones’, in which innovative existing and new companies of all sectors could apply for financial investment to promote growth.
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