THE Scotland 5G Centre (S5GC) has announced it is expanding its S5GConnect Programme with two new 5G innovation hubs in Aberdeen and Kilmarnock.
This launch will mark the fourth and fifth S5GConnect hubs, following the announcement of hubs in Forth Valley, Dundee and Scotland’s first rural hub in Dumfries. These hubs are designed to support economic growth through the deployment and adoption of 5G technology, supported by a £4 million investment from the Scottish Government.
Based in ONE Tech Hub, the new hub in Aberdeen is a partnership with Opportunity North East. In Ayrshire, HALO Kilmarnock will be the lead partner and the hub will be hosted in The HALO Enterprise and Innovation Centre at The HALO Digital & Cyber Innovation Park.
The hubs will act as ‘business enablers’ with the aim of accelerating partnerships with key customers to leverage new applications and services, enabled through 5G connectivity. Specialist staff will support companies to develop, prototype and test real-world applications and use cases over a 5G innovation platform, gain one-to-one consultancy and professional support to develop and scale businesses at no initial cost to the user.
Since launching the first three hubs, The Scotland 5G Centre has engaged with over 400 businesses.
Scotland’s economy secretary Kate Forbes said, “These new 5G Innovation Hubs will help boost the economy and encourage entrepreneurship in Aberdeen and Kilmarnock. The S5GConnect Hub programme is playing an important role in unlocking the power of 5G technologies, helping small and medium‑sized enterprises with the skills they need to understand how 5G can benefit their business.
“This transformational technology could provide Scotland with competitive advantage and, most importantly, improve quality of life for citizens and businesses across the country as we rebuild a sustainable economy with good jobs at its heart.”
Paul Coffey, chief executive of the Scotland 5G Centre, added, “Announcing two further S5GConnect Hubs is a significant step forward in this innovative new programme. Our expanding hub network will unlock growth and innovation, augmented through 5G network capabilities, and re-imagine customer processes and outcomes through data, AI/AR and machine learning.
“Acting as a catalyst to place Scotland at the forefront of digital connectivity, each hub will build on regional engagement, job creation and skills development by supporting key sectors and businesses.”
Jennifer Craw, chief executive, Opportunity North East, said, “Locating the S5GConnect Hub within ONE Tech Hub provides businesses and tech developers with the opportunity to demonstrate, develop and apply 5G connectivity in new applications and ensure the region’s key sectors continue to be at the forefront of digital and technology developments and further strengthens ONE Tech Hub as the forum for the digital ecosystem.”
Marie Macklin CBE, founder and executive chair of the HALO, commented, “We’re really pleased to welcome a Scotland 5G Centre Connect Hub to The HALO Enterprise and Innovation Centre. The HALO is setting the standard for low carbon energy sites across the UK offering a state-of-the-art environment for entrepreneurs specialising in green growth by building a sustainable community powered by renewable energy.
“Hosting a Scotland 5G Centre Connect Hub here at the HALO will further enhance our community approach to providing digital and cyber jobs with skills development, economic growth and access to employment opportunities.”