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UK MUST FOCUS ON ENCOURAGING TECH SMES TO LIST, ACCORDING TO FOUNDING MEMBER OF THE EUROPEAN TECH ALLIANCE

European Council President Donald Tusk says agreement on a UK trade deal is not the priority in Brexit negotiations, with discussions about the future relationship coming after agreement on “people, money and Ireland”. As a solution to any funding shortfalls which take place as a result of these negotiations, the UK should focus on encouraging more small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to list, according to a founding member of the European Tech Alliance.

Speaking to the BBC , Gianpiero Lotito, a founder and CEO working in deep tech with human language search platform FacilityLive, said that getting the conditions right now could put Europe between 5 to 10 years away from producing a giant on the scale of Google or Amazon. Europe already has more public listed tech companies than the US or China but there is still a lack of giants.

“Our European funding model is not as mature as in California, but we shouldn’t be looking to mimic the Silicon Valley model like for like anyway. We have to create conditions that are suited to the quirks of the European market.

“For instance, in the UK the classic success trajectory is to sell out to a US or Asian giant and pull in about £100-300 million, missing out on the eventual multi-billion pound listings achieved elsewhere. So we need initiatives like the London Stock Exchange and BorsaItaliana ELITE programme, which help SMEs like mine to get ready to list – because we need to encourage European tech companies to stay the distance here.

“There is an important link between successful IPOs and boosting confidence amongst both investors and entrepreneurs – so that they make bigger bets on the European market.”