Scotland business

Move to help Edinburgh creative firms go digital

Image caption Creative Bridges aims to help businesses like theatre companies survive in the digital world

An organisation leading the way in helping to grow technology companies has launched a drive to back new businesses in the creative industry.

The programme being run from Edinburgh's CodeBase aims to ensure theatre companies and others can keep ahead in the digital world.

About 220 creative industry workers are due to join the Creative Bridges programme in the next three years.

Edinburgh and Napier universities and Creative Edinburgh are also involved.

Creative Bridges is part of the £7.6m Creative Informatics initiative linked to the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal.

'Talent starved'

Oliver Littlejohn, from CodeBase, said: "It's to try and bring people from the creative industries into the fold, it comes to building great software products.

"We've got musicians, interior designers, theatre companies, dress makers - you name it.

"It's about future proofing themselves - making sure they're still going to be relevant as things move more towards software."

The Creative Bridges programme is already being trialled with a pilot group of creative industry workers.

One of those is Andrew Girvan, who founded the firm Scottie which helps build websites for organisations that run ticketed events such as theatre companies.

He told BBC Radio's Good Morning Scotland programme: "Creative Bridges isn't an ability to click our fingers and suddenly have developers - but it's certainly good to better understand how we can structure the business in such a way that when we get round to the building process, it has less questions in it."

Mr Littlejohn added: "We've been blessed with multiple tech success stories here in Edinburgh, but we know there are many more great ideas that need support be realised."

"It's also the case that many of the technology start-ups are starved of the kind of creative and design talent that can really help them to scale."

For more on this story and the latest business news as it happens, follow BBC presenter Andrew Black's updates each weekday morning on BBC Radio Scotland's Good Morning Scotland programme between 0600 and 0900.

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