employed in tech and digital businesses


digital enterprises


Value (GVA) to the Hampshire economy each year


of employment share in the Hampshire & Isle of Wight region

Digital: We are a digital economy

Digital technology is a prominent element of Hampshire’s economy, representing around 10% of the economic output.


Hidden amongst the luxuriant Hampshire landscape are world leading businesses, centres of research and development, universities with renowned academics, big brands, big thinking, extraordinary talent, and lots of tech.

Hampshire is an innovation ecosystem with myriad science parks, universities, and commercial operations such as IBM, Arqiva, Fujitsu, Sony, Starling BankOrdnance Survey, and Garmin; this is a big county for big players.

Hampshire’s historic military role has spawned specialist businesses in artificial intelligence, cyber security, unmanned systems, electromagnetic intelligence, software; this is ‘tech country’. Creative talent and immersive technology thrive in our creative and gaming sector. Some of the companies in this sector are delivering creative solutions for Google, Mattel, Microsoft Studios, Nickelodeon and Lego.

Hampshire is a success story, it is a county of innovation, creativity, entrepreneurship, talent, and some of the biggest brands, ambitious scale ups, disruptive start-ups and keenest minds in the world.


Leading in all things digital

Hampshire stands out for its expertise across a range of digital enabling technologies, including AI, 5G, Cyber Security, Big Data, Photonics and Quantum.

In Hampshire these technologies are leading innovation in several sectors including Maritime and Maritime, Lifesciences, Financial Services, Aerospace and Defence and Advanced Engineering. The result is a high growth, high value, and a highly successful knowledge-based regional economy, with outstanding potential for further innovation and growth.

Creative talent thrives in Hampshire and the region also has an emerging Creative, Gaming, and Immersive Technologies sector supported by exceptional academic scene and their centres of excellence such as the University of Portsmouth’s Centre for Creative and Immersive eXtended Reality (CCIXR).

Solent University is also launching a new partnership with global creative technology company Adobe to become an Adobe Creative Campus, (only the second one in the UK). It will give students the opportunity to bring their studies to life, enhance their digital skills and gain an edge in the modern workplace.



Hampshire is a dynamic, vibrant, and growing county, aspirational and forward thinking. The four universities in the region provide a steady stream of talent. More than 5,000 students specifically studying Computing, representing 40% of all students studying Computing in the South East region.

The University of Portsmouth has the third highest number of students studying computing in the UK. Hampshire is a great place to start and progress a career, the number of IT jobs (circa 49,000) in Hampshire is 19% above the national average.

Universities continue to evolve their computing science related courses in line with industry demand, including areas such as ethical hacking, digital health and fintech.

Headcount growth in the South East has increased by 27% in 2020, highlighting the specialist talent and skills that digital and technology businesses need to thrive.

With assets such as the Southampton Web Science Institute (WSI), and the BAE National Maritime Autonomy Test Bed, Hampshire has existing and growing expertise in digital and disruptive technologies.


The perfect base

Close to London and Heathrow, the county is already a creative and digital powerhouse, with companies such as Ouno in Farnborough, who create interactive branded experiences for clients all over the world. Hampshire also continues to attract both inbound multinationals and new tech start-ups – from the likes of Dark Cosmos Creative, who are headquartered in Portsmouth and bring creative ideas to life by using visual effects, to Toob, RazorSecure and Transparently.

In the 2019 Tech Nation Report, Basingstoke’s burgeoning digital sector was named as the fourth best place for such investment, with total deals worth £425 million between 2015 and 2018. The report also identifies Basingstoke as level with Prague, Strasbourg and San Jose when it comes to cyber investment.

Nesta recognises the digital and creative economies in Portsmouth and Southampton to be among the 15 fastest growing clusters for job growth in the UK.


Digital infrastructure

With over 90% of premises in the county already connected to superfast broadband, accessing speeds of 24 megabits per second, and investment of £28 million to get that to 100%, Hampshire is already well connected. We have ambitions to be one of the first 5G connected counties in the UK. Working in partnership with the 5G Innovation Centre (University of Surrey), a 5G Emulator has been established in Basingstoke for local businesses and entrepreneurs to get a head start on enabling new technology.

Hampshire based Ordnance Survey (OS) are also leading on the Government’s E- CAVE initiative aimed at better understanding the infrastructure required to support a nationwide network of connected and autonomous vehicles.


Support network

Hampshire provides a strong business support ecosystem and hosts a volume of vibrant and established digital networks, organisations and events.


Get in touch

The Business Hampshire team are here to help you make the most of your business potential. Whether you have questions about the recruitment of skilled staff, require information and/or access to the centres of innovation and research or connections to educational, research and business support organisations our team are ready to provide all the support you need.

For more information contact Michelle McClean, Sector Growth Manager for Digital and Life Sciences, Michelle.McClean@hants.gov.uk.


Available business space for digital companies

If you are looking for space to relocate or grow your business, take a look at some sector specific development and properties within our Hampshire Portfolio:


Digital Stories

Key contact:

Michelle McClean
Sector Growth Manager
0370 779 4785