CloudCity Programme launches in the Sheffield City Region

Published 6th November 2012 at 11:55am

Today the Sheffield City Region’s Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) announces the launch of its CloudCity Programme, developed as part of its City Deal with Government, to drive economic growth through attracting technology based jobs to the Sheffield City Region.

The programme has been developed by the LEP and has been built in collaboration and with significant support from Barnsley Metropolitan Council, Sheffield City Council, Sheffield Hallam University and the University of Sheffield. The LEP’s workstream lead for CloudCity is Board Member Lee Strafford, who was co-founder, and former CEO, of successful UK internet service provider PlusNet.

The CloudCity Programme will be rolled out over this coming year and has been established with several key objectives including:

  • Launching the dotforge accelerator, a technology start-up programme. The dotforge accelerator will support start-up companies and attract talent to the region by offering businesses dedicated mentoring and assistance;
  • Developing next generation, green data centres in the region, to attract cloud providers and  drive the growth of cloud computing in the Sheffield City Region and the UK;
  • Focusing the CloudCity Programme on supporting key growth industries, like advanced manufacturing, health technologies and low carbon energy generation, through research and development;
  • Generating new software and cloud-based solutions to help improve public sector services for citizens in the region and further afield.

James Newman, Chair of the Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership, said,

“Cloud City is one of the Sheffield City Region’s key programmes for growth, and part of our ‘City Deal’ with the Government. It’s bold and it’s ambitious and we hope to see other major announcements before the end of 2012, including partnership with some of the biggest names in global technology.”

One company already working to support innovation in the Sheffield City Region is Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS is working with the LEP and the CloudCity Programme by providing cloud computing services and mentoring to the companies participating in the dotforge accelerator. This assistance will help the city region’s entrepreneurs to get started in the cloud.

Frank DiGiammarino, Director of Innovation at AWS’ Worldwide Public Sector said,

“AWS has a strong focus on helping local businesses and governments around the world to grow. We are excited to be supporting the LEP and the dotforge accelerator, which is helping business in the Sheffield City Region.”

Simon Green, Executive Director for Place at Sheffield City Council, said:

“The CloudCity Programme has the potential to transform the Sheffield City Region into an internationally recognised digital powerhouse and be at the centre of the next industrial revolution, which is digital. It will not only grow best of breed technology businesses and products in the Sheffield City Region, but it will also give engineers, of all kinds, and entrepreneurs the tools to collaborate and succeed.”