Consortium led by Barclays Eagle Labs launches new initiative to drive growth and innovation in Greater Manchester’s digital security sector

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Barclays Eagle Labs is launching a new digital security innovation proposition, with consortium partners Plexal, Lancaster University and The University of Manchester.

The initiative will work to drive innovation and growth across the digital and cyber security sectors in Greater Manchester and across the UK, over a thirteen-year commitment.

The initiative aims to support 500 start-up businesses and create over a thousand jobs within the digital security and innovation sector.

Barclays Eagle Labs, in partnership with Plexal, Lancaster University and The University of Manchester, is launching the Digital Security Hub (DiSH), a new initiative to help drive innovation and growth in Greater Manchester and the wider UK’s digital and cyber security sectors, with an aim to support 500 start-ups and create over 1000 jobs in Greater Manchester1.

The DiSH proposition will be headquartered in Manchester in an 11,000 square foot state-of the-art space in Heron House, due to open in the summer, but accessible virtually UK-wide. The space, available for co-working or private office space for businesses and entrepreneurs, will provide access to networking opportunities, business growth programmes and mentorship from industry experts. 

The consortium of partners, appointed by Manchester City Council, will also provide a range of cyber and digital educational initiatives across the Greater Manchester Combined Authority.

This will include training and support for businesses, business owners and employees through workshops and seminars and upskilling over 1000 individuals in the next five years to help them access opportunities in the growing sector, with a focus on deprived local communities to promote social mobility through innovation.

In addition, DiSH will inspire and educate the future workforce by offering cyber and digital skills workshops working with local primary schools, colleges and employers.

In the first of a range of growth programmes offered by DiSH, businesses can register their interest now for the dedicated Digital Security Accelerator programme, designed and delivered by Plexal. The programme will accelerate the development and growth of digital and security start-ups and SMEs, providing participating entrepreneurs with bespoke support to help commercialise and scale innovative solutions. To register interest, visit: DiSH.Barclays

Graham Bastin, MD and North West site lead at Barclays, said: “Digital and cyber security skills are becoming ever more crucial to the function of businesses, government as well as society at large."

“Through the collaborative DiSH initiative we, along with our consortium partners, hope to find and support talented entrepreneurs in the sector, and bring digital and cyber skills to the North-West. We believe this will support the growth of a diverse and inclusive digital security industry within Greater Manchester and beyond.” 

Councillor Bev Craig, Leader of Manchester City Council, said: "Manchester is Europe's fastest-growing tech city and is establishing itself as a centre of excellence for digital and cybersecurity. DiSH should help build on this and create a wide range of new opportunities in the sector for Manchester and Greater Manchester people." 

For more information about the Digital Innovation Security Hub, please visit: DiSH.Barclays

1DiSH Objectives:

  1. Support 500 start-ups and scale-ups within the Digital Security and Innovation sector over a 13-year period via the delivery of accelerator programmes and always-on business growth support.
  2. Support the creation of 1,100 jobs within the Digital Security and Innovation sector over a 13-year period with a focus on targeting Greater Manchester residents from deprived local communities.
  3. Work collaboratively with public, voluntary, and private sector Digital Security and Innovation partners to up/re-skill the Greater Manchester community, enabling access to Digital Security and Innovation opportunities.
  4. Curate a diverse and inclusive Digital Security and Innovation ecosystem which is representative of the Greater Manchester community in which it serves.

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