George Osborne MP launching the first report of the Northern Powerhouse Partnership at the Leeds-hea
Nick Hill

George Osborne launches first Northern Powerhouse Partnership report at aql’s Leeds HQ

On Febraury 3rd, Rt Hon George Osborne MP launched the first report of the Northern Powerhouse Partnership.

The report was unveiled by Mr Osborne at an event hosted at the Leeds-headquarters of integrated telecommunications and data services company, aql.

The report forms the basis for the work the Partnership wants to undertake, collaborating with partners across the North, in the coming year to make the transformational change that is needed to the Northern economy.

aql has been involved in building the digital foundations for the Northern Powerhouse since it was first discussed at the company’s headquarters in early 2015 by George Osborne and former Prime Minister, David Cameron.

aql, established in 1998 by entrepreneur, scientist and digital innovator Adam Beaumont, is responsible for much of the data flowing in and out of the North via its data centres in Leeds.

The company also provides mobile messaging services and supplies wholesale messaging platforms to international and UK networks.

aql’s role in the ecosystem is to interface with software systems, allowing businesses to communicate efficiently with their customers.

Dr Beaumont said: “The emphasis that the report places on digital, green energy and health innovation fits firmly with our own goals and values and those of Leeds itself. We’ve already established numerous partnerships across northern cities centred on these capabilities.

“We must also not forget the role in cyber capability in supporting sustainable innovation – particularly in healthcare. We need to ensure that the technology to protect data of citizens is fostered.

“Although aql is a national operator, with international clients, we were founded and are based in Leeds and have always invested and partnered in the North of England through other initiatives we have founded - such as Northinvest – which brings together investors across the northern cities.

“I have no doubt the region’s growth will be powered by the expanding digital ecosystem and we are proud to be such an important part of its development.”

Roger Marsh OBE, chair of the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP), added:

“I am very pleased to see this report being launched in Leeds today. Leeds City Region is rapidly establishing its reputation as the fintech, cybersecurity and data capital of the North.

“Companies like aql – whose expansion the LEP recently supported, creating 30 new jobs in the region – are at the forefront of growth and innovation in this globally significant industry.”

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