Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), which provides dedicated investments in growing technology firms, has opened its first branch in the UK in a potential boost for the nation's start-up community.
The firm, which has invested in notable US firms including Cisco, Mozilla and Pinterest as well as UK start-ups such as Shazam, will offer a series of financial services such as loans, deposits and trade finance. It is based in East London.
The firm has already had a presence in the UK since 2004, but only offering loan services to businesses. Now, though, it will offer its full range of services to help build up its UK client base.
The UK head of SVB, Phil Cox, told V3 the firm had decided to open a dedicated UK branch as the nation was ripe for new innovations and business opportunities.
"The UK is a very attractive market. There is a strong focus on the technology sector causing the emergence of several cluster areas, world-leading universities out of which IP-based businesses are built, and a strong venture capitalist base," he said.
"Coupled to that is the fact many of our US clients are doing more business with the UK than any other market so it enables us to meet their needs as well," he added.
Cox also said the firm was considering other technology cluster areas in the UK such as Cambridge, Oxford, Reading and Bristol as potential locations for future branches.
"As a specialist we are focused on helping those companies we believe are going to be the stars of the future," he added.
Chancellor George Osborne also welcomed the announcement from SVB as yet more proof that the UK is "the technology centre of Europe".
"The knowledge, expertise and dedication that Silicon Valley Bank brings to the ecosystem is another important step toward our objective to make the UK the best place to start and grow the great technology companies of the future," he added.
The opening represents yet another boost for UK technology innovation with the government inking a deal with CERN in April to help start-ups gains access to expertise and insights from the organisation and the growth of the Silicon Roundabout area of East London.
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