Furnace incubator to create a hotbed for tech and digital innovation in Barnsley

30/11/2023 |

Start-up tech entrepreneurs with bright ideas are being invited to Barnsley to forge ahead with their inventions and innovations.

Barnsley’s DMC has launched The Furnace, an intensive six-month tech and digital incubation programme, starting in January 2024, and now open for applications.

This fully funded 6 month residency at the DMC will provide dedicated workspace, use of its MakerLab and CreatorLab facilities and lots of practical and specialist support in digital and tech innovation, business development and access to finance.
The incubator will also bring participants into the heart of Barnsley’s thriving and collaborative digital business community, which has developed a national and international network of contacts in the tech sector, over the past 15 years.

Furnace Incubation Manager/DMC manager Ben Hawley said “We’re delighted to launch our Furnace incubator and are keen to hear from people with a burning desire to work on an original tech innovation.

“Whatever they have in mind, and whatever stage they are at in the process of turning their innovative digital or tech idea into a commercial product or service, we want to hear from them. “If they have the potential, we have the tools, resources and guidance to help them transform their vision into reality.”

The Furnace will offer technical support to build, test and refine protypes; help to develop the business proposition around their idea, and support to finesse their pitches for investment, introducing them to possible funders.

The Furnace was launched at the DMC’s ‘Investors and Innovators Exchange’ event last week (30.11.23). Applicants are invited from across Yorkshire and the wider region – in fact from anywhere in the UK, or the world.

Cllr Robin Franklin, Cabinet Spokesperson for Regeneration and Culture, said: “This will be Barnsley DMC’s first incubator for tech entrepreneurs with a new idea. It builds on a proven track record of helping digital and tech businesses to start-up and scale through a range of programmes, accelerators and events.

“We're regional leaders in tech and digital ecosystem growth and believe that, to see our community succeed, we need to support those who want to innovate.

“We, therefore, look forward to receiving applications for the Furnace incubator and would like to stress that applicants are welcome from anywhere. Come to Barnsley and be part of our dynamic digital community. It really is the place of possibilities. We make it so.”

Applicants to the Furnace must commit to spending two days a week in the DMC for the duration of the incubator, attend events included in the programme, and sharing a progress report on what they have gained through the programme at its conclusion. Apply online here before Wednesday 20th December to start in January 2024.

DMC 01 and DMC 02 are owned and managed by Barnsley Council and are home to the Enterprising Barnsley business support team and South Yorkshire-wide Launchpad start-up support service. DMC 02’s MakerLab is equipped with 3D printers, laser cutters, virtual reality tools and other tech. Its CreatorLab has all the hardware and software needed to create professional audio-visual materials.

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