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New year, new tech incubator for South Yorkshire and beyond

Start-up tech entrepreneurs with bright ideas are being invited to Barnsley to forge ahead with their inventions and innovations.

Barnsley’s Digital Media Centre (DMC) has launched The Furnace, an intensive six-month tech and digital incubation programme, starting in January 2024, and now open for applications.

This fully funded six-month residency at the DMC will provide dedicated workspace, use of MakerLab and CreatorLab facilities and specialist support in digital and tech innovation, business development and access to finance.

The incubator will also bring participants into the heart of Barnsley’s established digital business community, which has developed a national and international network of contacts in the tech sector over the past 15 years.

Furnace Incubation Manager and DMC manager Ben Hawley said: “We’re delighted to launch our Furnace incubator and are keen to hear from people with a burning desire to work on an original tech innovation.

“Whatever they have in mind, and whatever stage they are at in the process of turning their innovative digital or tech idea into a commercial product or service, we want to hear from them.

“If they have the potential, we have the tools, resources and guidance to help them transform their vision into reality.”

The Furnace will offer entrepreneurs support to build, test and refine their prototypes, develop the business proposition around their idea, and finesse their pitches for investment, introducing them to possible funders.

Applicants are invited to the incubator from across Yorkshire and the wider region, also from anywhere in the UK, or the world.

Applicants to the Furnace have until December 20 to apply and must commit to spending two days a week in the DMC for the duration of the incubator, attending events included in the Furnace programme, and sharing a progress report on what they have gained through the programme at its conclusion.

DMC 01 and DMC 02 are owned and managed by Barnsley Council and are home to the Enterprising Barnsley business support team and South Yorkshire-wide Launchpad start-up support service. DMC 02’s MakerLab is equipped with 3D printers, laser cutters, virtual reality tools and other tech. Its CreatorLab has all the hardware and software needed to create professional audio-visual materials.

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