Plexal turns four!

Plexal as the Press Centre for the 2012 Olympic Games was turned into our workspace

Four years ago this week, the last few bolts were hammered in and the remaining traces of dust wiped away just in time for our first batch of members to enter our workspace. 

It was a heady time: Plexal was a startup itself but we aimed to support other startups and act as a catalyst for collaboration. 

And as we celebrate our fourth birthday, we thought we’d pause for a minute and take stock of how much we’ve grown.

Our community  is larger and closer than ever

Our community has mushroomed since 2017. We now have over 800 members – 15% more than 12 months ago. While many people are turning away from the office, our members are choosing in-person collaboration and voting with their feet.  

The community includes startups that have grown with us like Fiit, the online fitness app, and Bidstack, which listed on AIM while at Plexal.  

Our innovation work  

Whether it’s through our recent cross-border accelerator for Omani startups or our latest cyber scaleup programme, we act as a bridge between startups, the government and large organisations. Through our programmes, we’ve supported a total of 175 startups – and counting.  

A cyber ecosystem  

We’ve had a particular focus on cyber and we’re now bringing a UK-wide ecosystem together.  

Plexal’s delivering NCSC for Startups with the National Cyber Security Centre, we’re the dedicated innovation partner for the Greater Manchester Digital Security Innovation Hub and we’ve helped 72 of the UK’s most promising cyber startups earn more than £37m in revenue and secure over £200m in investment through LORCA.  

Our partners include industry giants like Lloyds Banking Group and Dell Technologies, tech leaders, city officials, government departments, investors and academic powerhouses like the Centre for Secure Information Technologies.   

Innovation thrives within an ecosystem and Plexal has very deliberately and strategically been bringing all the component parts closer together. 

Reaction from Andrew Roughan

Andrew Roughan, our managing director, had this to say:

“Plexal has a growing startup community, powers three world-class innovation centres across the country and has become a vital bridge between startups, the government and large enterprises.

“We now have a nationally significant startup community and work with future unicorns, government departments and global tech giants to deliver ambitious innovation projects that address some of the biggest social challenges facing the country.

“When Plexal was first envisaged as part of the London 2012 Olympic Games legacy, it was intended to be the innovation nerve centre for Here East where the impact would be local, national and international – and I’m delighted that we have delivered on that vision.”

Thanks to all our members, partners, clients and to everyone who’s championed Plexal from the start. We’re only getting started…

How to get involved 

  1. Bring your innovation challenge to us. If you work in government or a large enterprise, we can help you find the right partners and build proof of concepts or solutions with you.  
  1. Join our cyber community by taking up a Plexal membership or applying for free cyber membership if you’re an early-stage startup.  
  1. Join us as an investor or mentor. You could join our investor community, become a member of our workspace, hear pitches from members or offer your time for office hours.  
  1. Join our workspace community. We want a community that’s full of people with different backgrounds working on all sorts of different challenges. And if you’re already a member, tell us how we can collaborate with or support you.
  1. Attend one of our events, like our monthly women in business and LGBTQ+ meetups, or our upcoming Cyber Lates event.