US big data firm Pivotal today announced that it plans to invest £100 million in Tech City over the next 10 years and open its European headquarters in London. 

The San Francisco-headquartered company, which storage giant EMC is spinning off as a $1 billion start-up, revealed that a chunk of the funding will be spent on a new European HQ just off Old Street’s ‘Silicon Roundabout’ in East London, while the remainder will go towards recruitment, developing talent and expanding Pivotal’s customer base across Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Pivotal said it chose to base its European HQ in London to capitalise on the area’s creative and digital skills base.

Speaking at Pivotal’s new office, CEO Paul Martiz, said the mix of talent, infrastructure and UK government support makes Tech City one of the most exciting technology ecosystems in the world.

Pivotal said it will offer the space in the London office to a number of locally based initiatives, including the local data science community and another body that is encouraging women to choose a career in engineering.

Pivotal describes itself as a company at the intersection of big data, platform-as-a-service (PaaS) and agile development. It claims that its technology can help companies to create software applications that use big and fast data on a cloud independent platform to analyse massive data repositories from their organisation, while using familiar interfaces in a common virtual environment.

The news of Pivotal’s investment into Tech City was welcomed by the minister for culture, communications and creative industries, Ed Vaizey.

“When Tech City started people wondered if it was right for the government to be actively picking a winner,” said Vaizey in Shoreditch this morning. “I think it’s really paid dividends. One of the most compelling reasons for Tech City is that it acts as a beacon around the world that shows the UK is open to investment in technology.

“Pivotal is a hugely significant addition to that story. You can tell it’s a start-up because there’s a table tennis table behind you. It’s also technically the biggest tech start-up in the UK now.

“I think there is a critical mass developing here and almost all technology companies, wherever you find them in the world, if you ask them if they’re coming to Europe, a significant majority will say the UK is the best place to base their European headquarters.”

Indeed, large technology companies such as Google, Amazon and Twitter already have a presence in London and many of them are looking to increase their footprint. For example, Google is opening a new £650 million European HQ in King's Cross, while Facebook is also expanding its workforce in the city. 

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