Leeds City Region joins international AI alliance

Region will work with global partners to increase and develop investment opportunities in AI

16 February 2022

Leeds City Region has agreed to join an international network of regions working to support businesses in the rapidly developing artificial intelligence (AI) technology sector.

Membership of the AI Alliance will be announced at the AI Summit London, taking place 15-16 June. It will see Leeds City Region working with partner regions across the world to increase and develop investment opportunities in AI.

The partnership, led by the German region Baden-Württemberg, includes members in Dubai, Canada, USA, Switzerland and the Netherlands.

Tracy Brabin, Mayor of West Yorkshire, said: "Our region is at the forefront of artificial intelligence and big data, which are transforming business and promise to have a major impact on how we live and work in the future, and with the potential to tackle some of the biggest challenges facing the world today."

"Our digital sector is a national and global success story, driven by innovative businesses the talent of our people. I welcome signing this agreement with the AI Alliance and the boost it will give to this important sector."

Dr. Christian Herzog, CEO of Baden-Württemberg International (BW_i) and initiator of the AI Alliance : "We at BW_i are very pleased that in Leeds City Region we have found a first-class AI partner region in the United Kingdom. With the AI Alliance, we are building a unique network worldwide, consisting of eight regions that are working together in Artificial intelligence innovation and are positioning their ecosystems internationally."

Simon Kendall, Her Majesty’s Consul-General for Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg, said: "It’s great to see this exciting partnership. A shared strength between Baden-Württemberg and the UK, AI is one of the focus areas set out in our Economic Partnership Initiative UK-BW. The UK has a world-leading AI ecosystem and is home to a third of Europe’s total AI companies."

As a member of the AI Alliance, Leeds City Region will share information and practical experience with other partners. This includes best practices, events, networking, and support programmes for businesses’ international expansion, startups and SMEs.

Ranked number one in the UK’s Tech Town Index 2020, Leeds City Region’s digital economy is worth £6.5 billion.

Leeds City Region is one of the UK’s leading locations for AI technology, with a reputation for excellence in Digital health, Big data and analytics, FinTech, and LegalTech among others, and has been identified as a High Potential Opportunity by the Department for International Trade.