Patricia Keating

I am currently the executive director of Tech Manchester, an incubator for early stage tech startups in the North West.

Our primary purpose is to help founders reduce the costs of launching their businesses and to help them find ways to operate that are both smarter and leaner. This is provided by a host of support initiatives, including business skills workshops, a structured mentoring programme, non-executive director development and backed up by a variety of online resources.

Since Tech Manchester’s inception in 2017 I have been striving towards our goal to develop a greater Manchester and contribute to the city’s vision of being a leading European tech hub. Now in its third year, Tech Manchester’s mentoring programme supports hundreds of startups in the Manchester area, and collaborates on a mentoring level with key stakeholders including The Growth Company, Salford University, and Manchester Entrepreneurs Student programme.

This year has also seen the launch of a project that I am especially passionate about. Working in collaboration with Tech Equity, Tech Manchester is delivering ‘Women in Linux’, a social mobility career programme for women living in some of the most underprivileged wards in Greater Manchester.

Prior to this I worked for Regus in Northern Ireland for nine years, working my way up to become area manager, running two business centres of £1.5 million turnover. In 2015 I launched a startup, Wedoo, a personal support and destination company. Myself and my co-founder bootstrapped the business for two years, building an ecommerce portal to manage the business and its customers.

It was an invaluable experience into the challenges that entrepreneurs face and the types of support they need and has fed the approach I’ve taken to building Tech Manchester. The earliest stages in the life cycle of a business are the most under resourced but need the greatest support. That’s where Tech Manchester comes in.