UK technology innovation centres will launch on Wednesday in London, Brighton, Bradford and Sunderland to help digital entrepreneurs and start-ups work together and develop their businesses.
Known as Digital Catapult centres, the main facility will be in King's Cross in London, supported by the three regional centres across the UK.
The King's Cross site will give start-ups a place to address challenges in creating products and services relating to the Internet of Things, building trust around the use of personal data, and dealing with licensing hurdles concerning the reuse of creative content.
The main centre will be opened by Digital Economy minister Ed Vaizey, who expressed his wish that it will have a positive impact on the UK's technology sector.
"It is an exciting time to be a tech business in the UK. Our digital economy is already one of the strongest markets in the world, valued at more than £100bn," he said.
"Growth areas including the Internet of Things and digital creative industries are opening up a range of new opportunities for companies in the sector."
Neil Crockett, chief executive of the Digital Catapult, explained how the centres will provide support for ideas emerging from the UK's universities and technology clusters.
"When trying to address major challenges, for example the Internet of Things in healthcare, businesses reach a point where they need help to cross some ‘chasms' on the way to bringing their products or services to market," he said.
"The UK is full of universities and clusters where people think of great ideas and are given support. We want to complement that."
The centres will also provide programmes and workshops for small businesses, with support provided by larger, more established companies.
This will include intensive two-week sessions to bring together expertise from different industry sectors and disciplines to help businesses accelerate the development of products and services.
Not lacking in ambitions, the Digital Catapult aims to have a positive effect on 10,000 UK organisations by 2018 and to generate £365m worth of linked economic value.
The three local centres will be set up using a £500,000 fund from the Digital Catapult.
They will look to create thousands of new jobs, and drive technology innovation in the regions with the aim of attracting millions in investment and funding by 2025.
V3 will attend the launch of the main centre in King's Cross, so keep an eye out for updates from the event.
Start-ups and digital entrepreneurs are currently the focus of many organisations and big businesses, as evidenced by Google's recent purchase of two artificial intelligence start-ups from Oxford University.
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