Probe into claims of investors ‘snubbing’ Scotland

Duncan Martin and Laura Goodwin
Duncan Martin has launched a survey ahead of EIE24 to be hosted by Laura Goodwin

Organisers of one of Scotland’s biggest investor events are keen to discover if there is market resistance to backing the country’s growth companies.

EIE24, which matches investors with promising tech firms, returns as an in-person event this year after a two-year gap amid perceptions that Scotland lacks investment opportunities.

Early and mid-stage companies are now being questioned to determine whether they are struggling to get finance and how they perceive the political climate.

EIE has helped 540 companies raise more than $1.5 billion since it was established in 2008, but it was not held last year as funding became more difficult in a high interest rate and low growth environment.

Duncan Martin, EIE24 lead executive and director of entrepreneurship at the Bayes Centre, at the University of Edinburgh, said: “I attended a big event recently that included an investor panel discussing the problem of there being too few opportunities in Scotland.

“A company CEO responded to the panel saying this was wrong, there are lots of companies out there looking for investment. It became clear to me that there is clearly a disconnect between the two sides in this discussion.”

He added: “Our Investment Landscape Survey is an opportunity to help shape investors’ and ecosystem builders’ understanding of founders and an opportunity for founders to highlight the challenges they’re facing.

EIE returns as an in-person event (pic: Terry Murden)

“The more voices we hear from, the better able we will be to line up the needs and expectations of businesses and potential investment partners, and support the development and success of the ecosystem as a whole.

“That’s why I’d urge everyone in the tech ecosystem, founders and investors alike, to join the conversation and complete our brief survey.”

EIE24, which will follow an evolved format from previous years, will bring together investors from around the world for two days of networking, discovery, and fuelling the deal-making pipeline with some of Scotland’s most innovative companies from partners from across the ecosystem.

TV presenter Laura Goodwin will host EIE24 which will take place at a number of Edinburgh locations, including Edinburgh Castle, The John McIntyre Conference Centre, and Dynamic Earth on 30 April and 1 May.   

Anyone interested in taking part in the survey should follow this link – Investment Landscape Survey 2024. The closing date for responses is 7 March.

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