BSI Policy Briefing webinar on supporting SME businesses impacted by coronavirus

How to ensure business continuity in the face of coronavirus: your weekly update on the latest guidance and intelligence around the employment, tax, and financial implications of operating during the COVID-19 outbreak.

This week you’ll get access to the latest guidance and information on the cyber security landscape, including:

  • Current COVID-19 cyber threats
  • Latest guidance issued by NCSC
  • Update on the government-backed Cyber Essentials scheme

You will also get an update on the government’s furlough scheme, which has now been extended until the end of October. We will explore what the modified version of the scheme may look like, and what other options may be open to employers in structuring their workforce after the scheme changes at the end of July.

You’ll have the opportunity to ask questions throughout the live session. If you have some questions in mind, please send them over email ahead of the webinar.


  • Fiona Geskes, Principal Policy Advisor, Tax and Fiscal Policy, CBI
  • Stefan Martin, Partner, Hogan Lovells (guest speaker)
  • Representative from the National Cyber Security Centre (guest speaker)
  • Deborah Fraser, Director – Regions, CBI (chair)


event – 18 May 2020, 15:30 – 16:15

signup –

Intapeople COVID-19 Survey Results

The results of Intapeople’s recent COVID-19 business survey are in…
Last week we asked our clients and employers within our network about the impacts of coronavirus on their business, productivity and recruitment plans to find out how things have changed.
The results confirm that most businesses are taking a cautious approach to business activity, with over 60% furloughing staff and putting a hold on recruitment for the time being, while optimistically preparing for the future.
We have collated the feedback and compiled a report of our findings.
If you’re facing any of the challenges highlighted or any others we’re happy to have a chat and provide insight on the market so you’re better informed to prepare for the future.

LSH and NHS Wales Webinar – Event: 7 May 2020

Life Sciences Hub Wales and NHS Wales Shared Services Partnership would like to invite you to an online event which may be of interest to you and your colleagues.

During this online event, talking place at 10:30 – 11:30 on 7 May 2020, a guest panel of contributors will:

* Explain how PPE is used in different health environments.
* Provide up-to-date information on the current requirements for PPE in Wales for the health and social care sectors.
* Outline what manufacturers need to do, and consider, in order to effectively produce and supply PPE products.
* Provide an overview of Life Sciences Hub Wales’ innovation portal and how it’s being used to receive offers of support from industry.

‘Providing PPE and getting it right’ is chaired by Chris Martin, Deputy Chair of Life Sciences Hub Wales. Attendees are invited to submit a question to the panel on registration – to enable the panel to respond to key queries and concerns of participants.

Keep well and kind regards

Kelley Howlett-Booth
Llywodraeth Cymru / Welsh Government

TechNation ‘Lockdown Unlocked’ – Event: 5 May 2020

Tech Nation is running an event next Tuesday about scaling a tech company through this crisis. You can see the full listing here but below is the agenda so you can decide if any part of it would be useful to you


  • 10:00 – Tech Nation Welcome

  • 10:10 – Government Keynote

  • 10:20 – Futurist Keynote – How will covid-19 affect global economies in the future?


  • 10:30 – Investor Panel with Q&A – How will the funding landscape change post covid-19?

  • 11:00 – Debate – What is the role of the state vs the role of the ecosystem/VC during this crisis?

  • 11:20 – Government Panel with Q&A – Moving past the pandemic – How can government support the tech sector?


12:00 – Leadership during Lockdown

12:30 – Scenario Planning – Unlocking opportunities and Containing the Risks

13:00 – Cash is King


You’ll also have the opportunity to network (virtually) with the wider UK tech community, offer support and connect with those facing similar challenges.

Update from TechNation

I thought that you might be interested in some of the other events I’ve listed below that are not from Tech Nation but may be valuable to you or some of the people you’re connected with. 

Event: Office Hours for Female Founders with Playfair Capital

From Playfair Capital: Our third, remote edition of our collaborative Female Founder Investor Office Hours builds on the success of our events in February 2020 and November last year.

This time, we’re going fully remote to broaden access to female founders across the country, supported by Tech Nation and 30 investors from the UK’s leading VCs alongside the Playfair Capital team.

The primary aim of this initiative is mentorship & support, and secondary is fundraising. We hope that with time, the two will go hand-in-hand.

We welcome applications from any UK-based female founder whose business is tech and pre-Series A. We will do our best to accommodate as many founders as possible and provide support to all regardless. Applications will close at midnight on Sunday 24th May.

Register here

Event: Storytelling for Startups

I previously hosted Martyn for him to deliver his two-part workshop: Storytelling for Startups and Ideas to Say Yes to. The feedback from those workshops was exceptional and Martyn is running them again, this time online and with Barclays.

Part one is happening tomorrow:

Event: Deloitte: Operational resilience in high growth companies: Practical considerations for senior leaders working within finance, compliance and risk

From the event page:
“As the UK continues its lockdown, we are pleased to invite you to join our next webinar for high growth, tech-enabled business leaders, exploring “operational resilience amongst firms in the high growth sector”.

A topic perhaps now more pertinent than ever, this 60 minute webinar will be hosted by Deloitte subject matter experts on how the UK high growth, tech-enabled sector can address and navigate operational risk, both now, and in the coming months.

We are also delighted to be joined by Richard Caven of Amazon Web Services (AWS), who will provide an overview on what operational resilience means at AWS and how high growth, tech-enabled businesses can achieve operational resilience when using AWS Cloud.”

Register here


Gino Brancazio
Entrepreneur Engagement Manager – Wales 

IntaPeople Digital Round Table – Event: 13 May 2020

Each industry has its own set of unique challenges, none more so than those which we are faced with today brought on by the global Covid-19 pandemic. During these unprecedented times we believe it will be useful to bring together tech leaders such as yourself, to create an environment for you to chat with others that may be facing similar challenges, discuss ideas, and to learn from each other.

As such we’d like to invite you to a digital round table event that we are chairing @ 10am on Wednesday 13th May 2020.

This free online session will be about 30 mins in duration, and will include open discussions centered around topics of your choice, such as:
* How has your business been affected by COVID-19?
* What are the biggest challenges that you/your department/your business is facing at the moment?
* How are you managing and motivating remote teams/workers?
* How are you planning for post lockdown? social distancing measures?, etc.
* Has this situation changed how you view remote working? Will it become the norm for your business moving forward if it wasn’t already?

This is an opportunity for you to ask questions, air views, and to chat with other like-minded leaders in your industry, in order to share thoughts, strategies, methods and ideas. You are not alone, what is a challenge in your business is likely to be affecting others in a similar way.

If you would like a seat at the digital round table for tech leaders please let Jon Stock know on

If you can’t make it, but would still like to have a chat then let me know and we’ll arrange a call shortly after the event to share a summary of what was discussed. has created a Marketplace

Innovators are at the very heart of Europe’s new industrial strategy which charts a course for it transition towards digital leadership. Europe’s industrial strengths include high quality research, and a vibrant start-up ecosystem and a mature infrastructure, key elements of the cybersecurity landscape. Cybersecurity is a top priority in Europe with the EU investing in research and innovation since the early 1990s. A rich array of large and small businesses, universities and research organisations ensure a there is a constant flow of new results, services and skills emerging.

The EC-funded project has created a marketplace which captures these diverse innovations and is home to the many results of R&I projects. By building and nurturing a community of dynamic innovators in cybersecurity & privacy areas, the project has created a grass roots environment for innovation exploitation and sustainability opportunities. This natural framework connects research results with both the demand and supply sides.

With many results from H2020 projects featured, EU SMEs have also taken advantage of the platform and published their own innovative solutions on the platform. Users can preview and validate new leading-edge services, showcase their own solutions to potential users or partners who can support them in the evolution from prototype to real market solutions. In addition, users can provide early validation and feedback, thus possibly steer the direction of future development and research.

The Marketplace is an excellent chance also for end-users, in particular SMEs, which can benefit from services and solutions supplied by R&I projects, having the opportunity to both test and implement beyond the state-of-the-art cybersecurity solutions. This gives them a competitive advantage and the opportunity to attract more customers, create personalised services, sell premium cybersecurity- & privacy-enhanced services, and productise cybersecurity & privacy solutions.

The platform addresses end-users’ needs, enabling user-friendly discovery of the leading edge solutions which are present on it. The products can be filtered according to the five categories provided by the Network and Information Security (NIS).

We look forward to having your product in our marketplace catalogue.

Insert your product now by registering in and following the instructions.

Tender Notice from National Grid UK

Periodic indicative notice – utilities
Directive 2014/25/EU – Utility Directive

Section I: Contracting entity
I.1) Name and addresses
National Grid UK Limited/National Grid USA Service Company, Inc
Warwick Technology Park, Gallows Hill
CV34 6DA
Contact person: Faye Osborn
Telephone: +44 7808094949
Internet address(es)
Main address:
I.3) Communication – Additional information can be obtained from the abovementioned address
I.6) Main activity – Other: Electricity and Gas

Section II: Object
II.1) Scope of the procurement
II.1.1) Title – Cyber Security Products and Services
II.1.2) Main CPV code – 48000000
II.1.3) Type of contract – Supplies
II.1.4) Short description – Over the next 12 months, National Grid expects to be conducting various sourcing events
for cyber security related products and services.
II.1.6) Information about lots – This contract is divided into lots: No
II.2) Description
II.2.3) Place of performance – UK
II.2.4) Description of the procurement
National Grid uses the Achilles — Utilities Vendor Database (UVDB) — to identify and qualify potential suppliers for our goods and services requirements. For the majority of our purchases, it is a condition of supplying to National Grid that suppliers are registered on the UVDB. Over the next 12 months, National Grid expects to be conducting various sourcing events for cyber security related products and services using the following Achilles codes:
1.5.1. computer hardware and accessories – workstations/servers,
1.5.7. general business software,
1.5.8. specialist business software,
1.5.9. technical software,
1.5.12. computer systems.
Should you wish to tender for the provision of cyber security related products and services you will need to be registered on Achilles — UVDB for all codes listed above that are relevant to the products and services you provide.
Please contact Desta Wheeler at Achilles on: if you require any assistance.
II.3) Estimated date of publication of contract notice: 06/04/2020

Section IV: Procedure
IV.1) Description
IV.1.8) Information about Government Procurement Agreement (GPA)
The procurement is covered by the Government Procurement Agreement: No

Section VI: Complementary information
VI.5) Date of dispatch of this notice – 03/04/2020

List of Free Online Cybersecurity Learning from NIST

During this unusual time in our lives, many of us find we want to improve our knowledge, skills or even prepare for new career opportunities. If you are interested in cybersecurity careers, there are numerous online education providers to choose from. Many online courses are available from your local community college, four-year universities, even the prestigious Centers of Academic Excellence programs – please review all options.

The links on this webpage are for free and low-cost online educational content on topics such as information technology and cybersecurity. Some, not all, may contribute towards professional learning objectives or lead to industry certifications and online degrees.

Please note that this site will continue to be updated as new information is gathered and edited for clarity and accuracy.

COVID Advice from TechNation Wales

Innovate UK Fund

New Innovate UK fund: Business-led innovation in response to global disruption

UK registered businesses can apply for a share of up to £20 million to respond to new and urgent needs in UK and global communities during and following the Covid-19 pandemic.


Update to the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)

From the BBB:

“…the recently launched Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) has now been significantly expanded along with changes to the scheme’s features and eligibility criteria. The changes mean even more smaller businesses across the UK impacted by the Coronavirus crisis can access the funding they need.

Importantly, access to the scheme has been opened up to those smaller businesses who would have previously met the requirements for a commercial facility but would not have been eligible for CBILS. This significantly increases the number of businesses eligible for the scheme. The expanded scheme will be operational with lenders from Monday 6th April 2020.

New scheme features

  • No personal guarantees for facilities under £250k: Personal guarantees of any form cannot be taken under the scheme for any facilities below £250k.

  • Personal guarantees for facilities above £250k: Personal guarantees may still be required, at a lender’s discretion, but recoveries under these are capped at a maximum of 20% of the outstanding balance of the CBILS facility after the proceeds of business assets have been applied.

  • A Principal Private Residence (PPR) cannot be taken as security to support a personal guarantee or as security for a CBIL backed facility.

  • Security: For all facilities, including those over £250,000, CBILS can now support lending to smaller businesses even where a lender considers there to be sufficient security, making more smaller businesses eligible to receive the business interruption payment.”

Here is a fact sheet from the BBB.


Support & Mentorship

We are working on a research project with Cambridge Judge Business School and the Behavioural Insights Team to determine the impact of mentoring on digital tech businesses.

As part of this project, we are able to offer the opportunity for free mentoring to any digital tech SME with more than five employees.

For more information and to apply go here.


Statistics and Interesting Reads

A fascinating dive by Google into UK mobility changes city-by-city since the lockdown began.

Good article on building a virtual community across speed networking, webinars, shared experiences, virtual conferences etc – Don’t Just Throw Together a Webinar – The Virtual Events Crash Course You Need

A 24-tweet thread on how VCs are thinking about the pandemic. Not all VCs of course, but worth a read to get one perspective –

A solid post on managing layoffs, should founders unfortunately have to use it – Planning and Managing Layoffs

An interesting ready from Beauhurst on The effect of coronavirus on UK investment: Q1 2020

A nice story: members of the Cyber Wales network have been helping the NHS to receive and set up new IT equipment being sent to help fight the increased demand on the health service.