For this week’s Our Week in Digital, we bring you a round-up of this week’s main headlines. Some main headlines that have caught our eye this week are: Deloitte announce the winners of the Tech Fast 50, Amazon grow their Cloud portfolio and GitHub plan the 1000 year storage of opensource software. Read on for more!!  

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Deloitte announces the winners of the 2019 UK Technology Fast 50

One of the main headlines this week, Deloitte has revealed the results from the 2019 UK Technology Fast 50. These awards recognise and rate the 50 fastest-growing technology companies in the UK based on the last four years of revenue data.

The winners are the leaders of the pack and read like a who’s who of the sector. Collectively, they can boast almost a 9000 strong workforce. They have an impressive average growth rate of 3,878% and total revenues of over £650m across 2019 alone.

Overall, Fintech disruptors Revolut is the winner.  

So what propelled them to the top spot?

Revolut achieved an average three-year growth rate of 48,477% in the year 2018/2019. This amazing achievement also secures them the accolade of the fourth-highest growth trajectory in the history of the UK Fast 50 competition.

The success of Revolut epitomises the wider growth patterns of UK Fintech.  

Fintech businesses comprise 30% of this year’s winners, including six businesses in the top ten. The top three fastest-growing companies in this year’s competition were from the world of Fintech. Taking second and third places respectively are credit providers OakNorth (37,449%) and Dividebuy (23,878%).

Fintech businesses may comprise the top three and make up the lion share of the top 10, but it is software companies who make up the largest proportion of the winners; up to 48% from 40% last year.

The success of these tech companies has been hailed as exceptional, especially considering market uncertainty. Duncan Down, lead partner for the Deloitte UK Technology Fast 50 programme commented that the progress of these tech businesses is “largely due to the drive, resilience and creativity of the teams being celebrated in these awards”.

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Capital gains

Although these top 50 companies hail from all over the UK, London continues to dominate. 64% of the winners are based in the capital, including eight of the top ten. In particular, London puts out a strong performance in fintech; being home to 13 of the 15 winners.

London has all the ingredients for success. A wealth of large financial institutions, a strong international talent pool, and proximity to potential investors help to secure London’s place as the nucleus for the country’s leading technology companies.

Revolut chief operating officer, Richard Davies has the ambition to build on the success of its journey so far. Of the awards he says: 

“Deloitte’s Fast 50 ranking is a fantastic showcase identifying the success of technology start-ups in the UK. Revolut being recognised in these awards highlights just how far we have grown in the industry.”  

He sees “phenomenal potential” for the company in the years ahead, and has ambitions for Revolut to grow into a “truly global brand”. He plans to heavily invest in its people and processes to make this happen

Revolut has certainly enjoyed a prosperous journey so far. This latest accolade just cements their position as market leaders amongst a cohort making waves across the fintech ecosystem.

Amazon launches AWS Data Exchange for tracking and sharing data sets.

Also making the main headlines is tech giant, Amazon. This week, Amazon has announced a new addition to its growing portfolio of cloud products. Amazon Web Services (AWS) Data Exchange has been designed as a way for AWS customers to “securely” find, subscribe to, and use third-party data from “category-leading” brands.

More than 80 data providers have contributed over 1,000 products containing data at launch. Reuters, for example, is making available its curated selection of over 2.2 million unique news stories in multiple languages.

AWS Data Exchange general manager Stephen Orban says that Amazon has responded to a hole in the market; one that hasn’t been plugged in more than 20 years.

“Customers have asked us for an easier way to find, subscribe to, and integrate diverse data sets into the applications, analytics, and machine-learning models they’re running on AWS”, he says.

This new product is thought to address the shortfall.

“AWS Data Exchange gives our customers the ability to quickly integrate third-party data in the workloads they’re migrating to the cloud while giving qualified data providers a modern and secure way to package, deliver, and reach the millions of AWS customers worldwide.”

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How does AWS work?

AWS Data Exchange enables customers to select from third-party data sources in AWS Marketplace. Once subscribed, they’re able to use the AWS Data Exchange API or console to funnel data directly into Amazon Simple Storage Service.

Amazon cloud services continue to be a key driver for Amazon. Amazon revealed during its most recent quarterly earnings that the cloud computing division accounted for about 13% of Amazon’s total revenue for the quarter, growing 45% in sales to $9 billion.

GitHub launches Arctic Code Vault to preserve open-source software for 1000 years.

GitHub has hit the main headlines this week for sharing plans to open the Arctic Code Vault. This is in an effort to store and preserve open source software such as Flutter and TensorFlow.

Code for all open source projects will be stored here on film and is designed to last 1,000 years.

GitHub will house the code in a decommissioned coal mine in Svalbard, Norway. Svalbard is one of the northernmost locations on the globe, and permafrost here can extend hundreds of meters below the surface. Archivists believe the cold and near-constant conditions can help in the preservation of the catalogue.

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Where is the project headed?

The project began earlier this year. Thousands of popular GitHub projects like Blockchain, WordPress, and programming languages like Rust or Ruby have already been archived. In February however, the Arctic Code Vault will be extended to all public repositories. At its conclusion, the project will be massive in scale; according to data from the 2019 Octoverse Report, GitHub is used by more than 40 million developers and currently hosts more than 100 million repositories.

The GitHub Arctic Code Vault is a part of the GitHub Archive Program. It is a collaboration between Microsoft’s GitHub and groups like the Internet Archive, the Long Now Foundation and Microsoft research’s project, Silica.

The first snapshot of public repository code will take place in early February next year. Over time, GitHub will develop the pattern, and look to store code once a year or every two years. It will also develop a way for open source projects to retrieve code. However, GitHub CEO, Nat Friedman said these systems are still being put in place.

GitHub used their Universe conference for developers in San Francisco as the platform from which to share their news. Among other updates, developers can enjoy are Actions and Packages in general availability as well as apps for iOS and Android.

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A new blockchain-focused incubator opens in Paris.

From Paris’ main headlines this week, “The Garage”, a new incubator in Paris that has blockchain at its heart has opened. The company will support blockchain startups, help big companies launch blockchain projects and educate engineers about blockchain development.

The Garage is a hybrid project and has several aims. In the first instance, it wants to create a community of blockchain startups and support those businesses in different ways.

In exchange for 5% equity after 6 months, startups that are part of The Garage community will receive support when it comes to product, engineering, press relations and marketing.

Eventually, The Garage will extend its assistance, and use its network of investors to make introductions, help the startups gain funding and facilitate traction.

The Garage is also going to teach software engineers about blockchain development. The company will host free lessons in the evening. There will be some online resources as well.

5 startups are already enrolled in the program. Among these are Ipocamp, Ticket 721 and Elite Chain. The incubator has higher aspirations however and eventually hopes to support the journies of 25 startups each year.

Taking some equity from these startups isn’t going to generate revenue from day one. To remedy the shortfall, The Garage is going to work with big corporate clients on some blockchain projects in the hope that this could generate some revenue much more quickly.

We hope you enjoyed our round-up of the main headlines. This week has been very exciting for some huge names within the tech world. You can find loads more interesting stories on our blog.

If any of the this week’s main headlines have caught your eye then we would love to hear from you. Leave us a comment below!

About the author: As a founder of Ignite Digital Talent, I lead our brilliant team to ensure we deliver time and time again for our clients. I also stay closely networked with industry influencers to ensure we are well placed to understand the issues and challenges our clients face.

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