We’re proud to announce our new initiative Wayra UnLtd, a government backed social venture incubator bring together Wayra UK and social enterprise network UnLtd.
The news comes after Nick Hurd, Civil Society Minister, approved our bid for funding from the Government’s Social Incubator Fund to invest in the programme. Wayra UK and Unltd have matched the government funding to help set up the incubator, ready to take on 10 UK social enterprise businesses later this year. The move was announced at Nesta’s ‘Tech for good’ seminar to showcase social and technological innovation as a driver of positive change.
British business is getting good
The announcement signifies Wayra’s plans to support social venture businesses as well as start-ups with a purely commercial business model.
Simon Devonshire, Director of Wayra Europe said: “Wayra is massively proud to celebrate its new partnership with UnLtd to find, support and grow digital social ventures in the UK. We are also thrilled the UK Government is giving this special partnership its full support and backing.
“Wayra is the business accelerator that belongs to Telefonica. We find, invest and develop the best digital start-ups in eleven countries, which makes Wayra one of the biggest business accelerators on earth. UnLtd is a leading authority in the support and development of social ventures in the UK. The ‘Wayra UnLtd’ partnership combines the best attributes of both organisations in a new facility that will invest in and nurture the best social entrepreneurs in the UK, with a specific emphasis on digital start-ups.
“This is a major new development for Telefonica. Since its creation in 2011, Wayra’s focus has been building twelve academies, creating silicon valleys all around the world. This important new partnership with UnLtd and the UK Government is Wayra’s first step into specifically targeting the acceleration of social enterprises. Together we aim to address significant social issues through the use of digital technology combined with entrepreneurial talent – doing what we do best commercially whilst also delivering positive social impact.”
Cliff Prior, CEO of UnLtd added: “UnLtd are thrilled to be partnering with Wayra. It is a marriage made in heaven: our unparalleled track record in sourcing and accelerating social entrepreneurs and Wayra’s global incubator network, technical expertise and routes to market. UnLtd and Wayra have a shared culture of risk-taking and rule-breaking in the pursuit of exceptional talent. By bringing our models together we will unleash a new generation of game-changing social entrepreneurs using technology to change the world.”
Telefónica’s Wayra UK programme has already supported 19 start-ups with financing, technology and a cutting edge workspace.