In the past decade, major City Centre additions including Trinity Leeds and Victoria Gate, a thriving professional and student population, and a growing list of promising upcoming developments have helped boost Leeds as a place to live and work.
The continued growth of the City’s digital sector is perhaps one of the most exciting aspects of Leeds’ prosperity, and the Leeds Digital Festival, which takes place April 16-27, aims to showcase the City’s collaborative digital innovation scene. Now in its third year, the City-wide festival will facilitate more than 115 events across 50 venues and explore cutting-edge technology, spotlight the most recent research from Leeds’ universities, and host provocative tech-driven debates.
Key players in the Leeds digital scene will be instrumental in showcasing Leeds as the digital capital of the north through a range of informative and engaging seminars, workshops and networking events.
Here are some of the reasons why Leeds is the best digital city.
Although the City aims to attract more leading digital and tech companies into the region, Leeds is already home to some of the country’s biggest digital companies.
Big hitters such as Sky Betting & Gaming, who have doubled their employee base in the past two years, and NHS Digital, the City’s biggest digital employer who are responsible for major tech developments, already call Leeds home. Leeds’ £64.6billion economy is one of the many reasons the City has grabbed the attention of investors.
Perhaps the biggest implication that Leeds is a future hub of digital innovation and prosperity comes after the relocation announcement of the HMRC offices to the City, set to bring 6,000 civil servants to the centre of Leeds in 2020.
As well as being the base of bigger digital companies, Leeds is also booming with creativity thanks to its strong digital marketing sector, seen within the many digital agencies in the City.
This sector is in fact so strong that five out of the top ten digital agencies in the whole of North of England are based in Leeds, including twentysix, Epiphany and Branded3.
The number of startup digital companies emerging is a reflection of the entrepreneurial reputation Leeds is known for.
Recent successful digital startups in Leeds include Cocoon, a cloud-based home security system that recently raised over £2million of funding, and Synap, an award-winning AI and machine learning platform that helps students and employees to learn more efficiently.
Written by Sam Ramsden. Originally published in The Metro 4 April 2018