UK Government poaches Facebook chief
|22 Oct 2012 12:07 BST||Back|
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Facebook’s head of EMEA, Joanna Shields, is leaving the social network giant to take on the role of chief executive of the UK’s Tech City programme.
The Tech City Investment Organisation (TCIO), set up by the Government in April 2011, aims to create a Silicon Valley cluster of technology firms in East London.
Shields takes over as chief executive in January, replacing Eric van der Kleij. She has also been appointed the UK’s business ambassador for the digital industries.
Shields will be responsible for attracting foreign investment into London’s East End and encouraging digital start-ups to set up their businesses there, often referred to as Silicon Roundabout.
There are currently around 3,500 enterprises in East London, including Google and Cisco, as well as hundreds of start-ups.
“The seeds have been sown in East London for a dynamic and successful cluster [of tech businesses],” Shields said in a statement. “We have the infrastructure and the talent. Now we need to accelerate the growth.”