SuperTech West Midlands to help growing firms access region’s £28 billion professional services sector

Birmingham SuperTech West Midlands

Five of the West Midlands largest business and professional services organisations have committed to meeting innovative technology firms from across the region.

Senior representatives from BNP Paribas Personal Finance, Wesleyan, Bruntwood SciTech, Shoosmiths and Barclays have committed to one-on-one meetings with emerging technology companies.

Organised by SuperTech, the meetings are designed to help growing firms access the business, professional and financial services sector, which generates £27.8 billion gross value added annually and employs more than 360,000 people in the West Midlands.

Andrea Tittel – director of innovation, customer & propositions at BNP Paribas Personal Finance, Anthony Pryke – Barclays’ Eagle Labs ecosystem manager, David Stewart – Wesleyan group chief operating officer, Cliff Dennett – head of business development at Bruntwood SciTech and Shoosmiths partner Tony Randle – will meet with 30 businesses over the next six months.

Hilary Smyth-Allen, SuperTech executive lead, said: “Relationships between established businesses and innovative companies are critical to economic development. However, gaining that access as a new entrant can be virtually impossible.

“As the UK’s first dedicated ProfTech supercluster, we believe the key to unlocking the true potential of the West Midlands’ professional and financial services cluster is by nurturing and accelerating an ecosystem that is based on collaboration between all firms, no matter their size.

“Our new Connector Series has been launched to facilitate this collaboration by providing unique access to major firms from across the West Midlands for SMEs, startups and founders across the FinTech, InsurTech, LegalTech, PropTech and HRtech sectors. The series will help to accelerate engagement and exploration of mutual interests.”

Stephen Hunt, CEO of BNP Paribas Personal Finance, commented: “I am a big supporter of what SuperTech is trying to achieve. I think that connecting the growing tech community with an established businesses like ours is a great initiative. Like many businesses in our sector we are focussed on finding better ways to manage our business and support our customers and I look forward to seeing if there are organisations in the West Midlands that can help with this task.”

To be in with the chance of securing one of the places businesses are being encouraged to register their interest at: www.supertechwm.com/connector-series

SuperTech was launched in February this year as the first professional services technology (ProfTech) supercluster in the UK. It is open to firms across the country and aims to increase technology-led productivity gains within business and professional services organisations.

Eight industry leaders from finance, law, property and technology were chosen to head up SuperTech including David Stewart, Group Chief Operating Officer at Wesleyan, Tony Randle, Partner at Shoosmiths, Simon Davis CEO of Warwick-based Nimbus Maps along with Inez Brown, president of Birmingham Law Society.

At the launch, David Stewart, Group Chief Operating Officer at Wesleyan and co-lead for the finance cluster within SuperTech, said: “ProfTech, like FinTech, is an emerging sector with enormous potential to scale. Having undertaken a number of studies into FinTech, which in just a few short years is now worth £411.7 million per annum to the West Midlands economy, we’ve identified three ways in which we can facilitate growth – access to businesses, access to technology and access to talented people.

“SuperTech combines all three, by connecting technology firms with the major professional services businesses we have across the region.

David continued: “For established organisations like ourselves, involvement in SuperTech gives us access to the region’s emerging tech talent and latest developments, while tech firms, whether focused on finance, property, law or insurance, can find new ways to solve business issues and gain direct access to a sector that is worth almost £28bn – 26.5% of the total regional economy.”

SuperTech will also encourage those who have developed solutions for finance and other sectors to consider how they might be able to adapt and open up markets in property, law and insurance with direct access to West Midland businesses in all fields.

Simon Davis, CEO of Nimbus Maps in Warwick which is revolutionising how property investors buy and develop sites and is one of four PropTech leads, observed: “The SuperTech collaboration is unique in taking this integrated approach which reflects the group’s fundamental beliefs that there is much to be gained in sharing intelligence and practice between professional silos.”