HRH the Duke of York has visited Oldham for an update on the new Open Future_ North start-up accelerator, currently under construction, which will help the development of the North of England’s digital and tech sector.
The facility – which is being developed by Wayra UK, part of Telefónica Open Future_, with Oldham Council – will open in 2017, and will help entrepreneurs in the Greater Manchester area develop new tech businesses, creating jobs and growth.
Building work on the state-of-the-art facility started in September and is part of a £1m investment by Oldham Council to help businesses thrive in the town’s Independent Quarter.
Jean Stretton, leader of Oldham Council said: “We are very excited about the development of Open Future_ North.
“When it opens its doors in 2017 to its first set of start-up companies, Oldham can be the birthplace for exciting new digital businesses that will not only create local jobs and investment, but could even develop tech ideas that can change the world.
“This project really opens up opportunities in Oldham and Greater Manchester to tech entrepreneurs that simply didn’t exist before.”
Gary Stewart, director of Wayra UK, added: “We are delighted to have the support of HRH the Duke of York, and his backing highlights the potential of this new venture, which could be truly transformative in terms of encouraging digital innovation in the North of England.
“Throughout history, the Greater Manchester region has been an engine driving the UK economy forward.
“Now, this new facility will help the next generation of entrepreneurs develop their ideas into real businesses, encouraging the growth of the digital sector in Greater Manchester and creating new highly-skilled jobs.”