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January 24, 2014

UK markets are failing technology firms, says Autonomy founder

Mike Lynch backs cybersecurity, augmented reality and wearable technology for ‘massive business’.

By Ben Sullivan

Founder of software company Autonomy, Mike Lynch slammed the UK market on Tuesday for failing to encourage new technology companies.

In a speech to City University’s Cass Business School, Lynch argued that the market is not doing its part for tech businesses.

"We still only have Sage in the FTSE 100, which is a big problem for the UK from an economic point of view."

He said that currently tech firms are more likely to float on the Nasdaq that on the London market.

Autonomy was sold by Lynch in 2011 to HP for $10bn, however, that deal is now going through regulatory and legal challenges.

Lynch however praised UK universities in fostering early enterprise and entrepreneurial spirit, and said that UK-based tech fundamentals were "the envy of the world."

"I think there’s a big advantage to doing it [setting up a business] in the UK; in Silicon Valley it’s very hard to get good staff – they’re likely to leave you and jump to another company. In the UK you get amazing people who are very loyal," he said.

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"There are a series of areas which could be massive businesses – cyber security is one; wearables, augmented reality and vision is another. The data that genetic sequencing generates will be huge. We’re at a time when there’s incredible opportunity, as so much of the infrastructure has been laid down, now is the time to do amazing things with it."

 

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