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Technology Media and Telecoms 2019 outlook

Video transcript

Technology Media and Telecoms 2019 outlook

So 2018 was another good year for the tech sector.

We saw two important flotations - Funding Circle, which is a key proof point for the Fin-Tech sector, and Farfetch which is one of the most successful e-commerce businesses we’ve seen come out of Europe. The UK has always been a successful place to raise money and I’m happy to say again that in 2018 six of the ten largest raises happened in the UK which is proof that the UK remains a key country to build and scale your business.

Challenges

There’s a number of key sectors where key battle lines are being drawn up in the UK for next year.

One is streaming platforms we see that Netflix has market advantage. Disney are now coming into the market, Amazon are there as well. Apple will launch one I’m sure and so we’ll see intense competition for eyeballs onto their streaming platforms throughout all of next year and beyond.

It’ll be interesting to see how the big six advertising giants respond to the challenge of technology. It’s already interfering with their business models and all of them face a challenge as to how they organise themselves for the future.

So going into 2019 there’s an important piece of infrastructure that’s getting built that enables most other technology companies and that’s fibre and 5G. An awful lot of modern technology companies are critically dependent on good communication. That’s now being built at scale in the UK. It’s really important that it goes well.

Opportunities

Brexit will be an important thing for all tech companies. Two critical things that all good tech companies rely on is the free flow of talented people and capital and it’s important that those two channels remain widely open.

We can expect to see a lot more business models emerge in 2019.Let me give you a couple of examples:

One would be the use of digital medicine and how people access health and health services. We might see driverless car companies starting to emerge and that’s going to be difficult, a tricky road to go down, but I think we will start to see it. We’ll see more and more e-commerce models as people use the internet to reach a customer segment that might be hard to through traditional channels but as Farfetch has proved, and many others, e-comm is the future and the UK is a leader here.

I think increasingly people will use automation or robotics to make their processes simpler and easier to deal with, but I think we’ll also see a growing trend around what is the right and ethical use of AI, and is it the right way to use these sorts of technologies? 

Looking Forward

For 2019 our mission for the TMT sector is to get in front of all of our companies, to be helpful to them, to understand them, and to play our part in helping them to grow, to generate wealth, and to generate employment.

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