Aberdeen’s entrepreneurial spirit and the drive to diversify the north-east economy has encouraged Barclays to open its second Scottish Eagle Lab.
It is hoped the specially created space, which opens at the end of the month at Opportunity North East’s new Tech Hub, will support the growing number of start-ups and drive innovation in the region.
The Eagle Lab will be part of the One Codebase incubator and will be one of Barclays’ flagship Labs for Industry 4.0.
Stuart Brown, head of SME Scotland at Barclays said it will help north-east entrepreneurs build on and diversify from the area’s strength in oil and gas, and unlock the potential of emerging technologies like the Internet of Things, advanced manufacturing and robotics, which are associated with the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
The Lab will feature facilities for digital fabrication, 3D printing and laser cutting and a range of electronics equipment. This will give businesses access to the tools they need to rapidly produce and test prototypes in hours rather than weeks, avoiding prohibitive costs or having to look overseas.
Entrepreneurs using the space will be backed by an ecosystem manager to provide mentoring, create connections and share opportunities to help high growth businesses achieve their ambitions.
A dedicated Eagle Lab engineer will also be able to offer technical expertise and advice to enable Industry 4.0 businesses to flourish.
Barclays’ local business banking team in Aberdeen and specialist “high-growth” managers will also be available to provide banking support.
Mr Brown said: “Aberdeen has a wealth of businesses and entrepreneurs with ambitions, ideas and deep technical expertise who need access to the right resources and advice to help them start up and scale up.
“Opportunity North East and CodeBase share our vision for boosting economic prosperity and diversification through innovation and entrepreneurship. By working in collaboration, we can maximise the support we are able to offer business in the region.
“The Fourth Industrial Revolution is changing how and where we all work and the skills we need.
“Eagle Labs is committed to supporting the development of skills in entrepreneurship, innovation and in new and emerging technologies such as AI, data exchange, connected devices, advanced manufacturing and much more.”
Sir Ian Wood, chairman of One and One’s D&E sector board, said: “One has invested at pace to build a digital tech community and cluster. Barclays’ decision to open an Eagle Lab in Aberdeen is another strong endorsement of the region’s talent and potential and further evidence of the continued growth of the local digital scene.”