Google shuts down London Campus for startups

The tech giant will still offer support for the UK's startup ecosystem, but it will no longer have a physical hub in the capital

Google has said it will not be reopening its London Campus for startups as it is no longer needed by the UK's vibrant technology sector. 

The support and training services will still continue, however, with staff to offer mentoring services to UK startups remotely. 

The 'Google For Startup Campus' first opened in 2012 in a seven-story building in Old Street, near the so-called Silicon Roundabout, as a collaborative space for young and new entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and community leaders. The workspace gave them access to Google technology, mentorship, meeting rooms and learning experiences, such as hackathons. 

However, the site was forced to close due to lockdown restrictions, and its services have largely been provided remotely since March 2020. Within that timeframe, the UK's startup ecosystem has continued growing and is now thought to be the third-largest in the world, with Google's hub's network of startups creating more than 11,000 tech jobs in its near ten-year history alone. 

However, Google says the needs of the UK's startup ecosystem have changed, and it will be closing its Silicon Roundabout hub for good as a result. 

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"Today's founders in London are part of a vibrant ecosystem of 250-plus co-working spaces, 35-plus accelerators, corporate programmes, and thousands of startups providing services to each other," the company said in a blog post. 

"The UK now receives 36% of all investment in tech in Europe and is home to the largest number of engineers and startups, as well as a third of European unicorns. The UK startup community doesn't need access to a single-shared physical space as much as it needs access to resources, mentors, and programmes available at scale, anywhere."

Instead, Google will implement a model it uses in Germany and the US, where staff operate without a physical building. This will include training programmes, mentoring and support for startups from less developed ecosystems to the resources and talent in the UK. 

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