What does tech in Croydon really look like?

By - Thursday 12th September, 2013

Becca Taylor reports on what has been a busy summer for businesses in #Croydon #TechCity.


Photo by David Pinkney. Image used under Creative Commons license.

#Croydon #TechCity took a summer break this year, but there was no rest for its burgeoning businesses and startups, which worked feverishly through the heat waves of July and August.

Kate Jackson, speaker at June’s Business Panel event and CEO of East London-based TableCrowd, has barely stopped, especially after winning a whopping £5,000 in legal fees which have been put to good use providing sound legal advice to the people of London over pizza and Peroni. TableCrowd also remains a great way for start-ups across London to meet up with one another, whether as entrepreneurs, business founders, or novices looking to escape their day job. (It also recently helped the Croydon Citizen editorial team host the inaugural Contributors’ Meal!)

Sarah Akwisombe has been so happy with the first set of We Are The Million funding stories that she’s rolling the scheme out across the whole of London. We Are The Million is a crowdfunding site with a difference – the focus is on getting small, existing businesses off the ground and each business must pledge to create a new job with the money they raise. They’ve successfully seen over £12,000 raised for four businesses, including Cronx Brewery who hit their target in a record five days!

Famberry became one of the seven sexy startups on CBR, who loves the family-only social network which also helps you build a family tree. In an age where we increasingly share more and more of our lives across social networks, Famberry seeks to be a private network, where you can post photos or updates for just your family to see, away from the prying eyes of Google.

The Croydon tech scene might not have the hipster edge of Shoreditch, but there’s so much going on here that it’s hard to ignore

Dotmailer is one of the borough’s biggest success stories – with offices springing up all over the UK, and now in New York and Melbourne, it’s hard to believe this company started and still operates in Croydon. The email marketing firm has built up an impressive group of clients over the years, including LV Insurance, Hallmark, and Nationwide, and continues to go from strength to strength. The dedication to South London is clear too, and it’s great to see that despite having international offices, maintaining that Cronx presence is important to them.

ICUK.net is one of the more established businesses which is part of the Croydon Tech scene. Founded in 2001, the ISP provides hosting, telecoms, and broadband to customers and resellers, and pride themselves on their control panel, which has been built and developed entirely in house by a series of creative developers. The latest version launched in August and includes a responsive design, making it easier for their resellers to work from tablets and phones. The Purley-based company also owns CIX, the original social network, which has been running since the late 1980s, and has obviously got many years on Facebook!

We Are The Million, Famberry, Dotmailler, ICUK – just some of the brightest stars in the expanding tech galaxy in Croydon. The Croydon tech scene might not have the hipster edge of Shoreditch, but there’s so much going on here that it’s hard to ignore. Croydon’s tech scene breaks stereotypes – it has a large number of active women working in tech, starting their own businesses and networking. It defies those who think of Croydon negatively, proving that it has the capacity and the talent to nurture tech start-ups. The Tech City initiative has the ability to provide so much for London’s biggest borough, and long may it continue!

Becca Taylor

Becca Taylor

Becca is a newcomer to South London, currently living in Sutton and working in Purley, as ICUK.net's Head of Marketing. She has a background in politics and journalism, and is slowly learning the ropes in the tech world. A graduate of Swansea University, Becca is also a keen fitness enthusiast and a proud fan of Southampton FC.

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  • Luella

    Cronx, love it. Hope to see you there later, Becca.

  • Christian Wilcox

    I still need to find out who was organising the New Addo dirt-bike track appeal. There’ll be tech there, and the Mayor wanted to talk to them.