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8 September 2022
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Unsplash © Scott Graham

New Tech Nation Visa Report reveals growing importance of non-UK nationals

The 2022 edition of the report demonstrates the major contribution of global tech talent in the UK – revealing that nearly a fifth of tech founders based in the UK are non-UK national – as well as the surge in Tech Nation Global Talent Visa grants.

Since its launch in 2020, the Tech Nation Global Talent Visa – officially known as the Global Talent Visa – enables global tech talent to work in the UK’s digital technology sector, in a bid to contribute their expertise, creativity and innovation to maintain the UK’s position at the forefront of the global digital economy.

Key Findings

Tech Nation, a UK growth platform for startups and scaleups, has today launched its Visa Report 2022 to recognise and celebrate global tech talent in the UK. One of the biggest takeaways in the report reveals 18% of all UK tech companies are founded by (at least one) non-UK national.

These non-UK founders are accelerating the growth of the tech sector across the UK, with tech companies founded by non-UK nationals raising almost 23% of all UK tech VC investment (£8B) in 2021.

Almost 25% of the 2500+ individuals endorsed for the Tech Nation Global Talent Visa are founders, and the majority are high-value employees working to drive the UK’s tech sector forward.

A surge in Tech Nation Global Talent Visa grants 

Global tech talent is pouring into the UK, as Global Talent Visas endorsed by Tech Nation have already accounted for more grants in the first half of 2022 than in the entirety of 2021, with 659 Global Talent Visas granted by Tech Nation in January – August 2022.

Almost 40% of all visa endorsees are working in non-technical tech roles and over a quarter of people endorsed for a Tech Nation Global Talent Visa are working in emerging areas of UK tech, such as AI, Cybersecurity and Data. Fintech continues to be a dominant talent magnet, with over 20% of people endorsed working in this UK strength sector.

Global tech talent is needed to fill record level of UK tech job vacancies, following record VC investment

Tech vacancies have increased on a month-by-month basis over the last year, from 145k roles advertised in May 2021 to 181k roles (as of May 2022).

In part, this boom in hiring is reflective of the growth seen in venture capital investment into UK tech companies in 2021, a 130% increase to just under $41bn. 73% of investment into UK tech comes from overseas – up from 71% in 2021.

Gerard Grech, Founding Chief Executive of Tech Nation, said: “The UK’s record level of tech job vacancies demonstrates that the need for outside talent has never been greater. Even with our buoyant, currently well-funded and diverse ecosystem, the UK cannot afford to be complacent in our pursuit of international talent.”

Anita Koimur, Co-founder and COO of LiveFlow, commented: 

“The UK’s thriving tech scene is an attractive destination for innovative and creative minds from all over the globe. The concentration of high-profile talent and collaboration with world’s top companies helps to build the company I’ve always wanted! I love how diverse and welcoming the country is, which means anyone can find a place here, no matter who they are or where they come from.”