Start Up Cafe

Startup Cafe is an exciting venture run by 5 enterprising young entrepreneurs:

Thomas Drapier, BSc(Hons) in Computer Science and Management Science,
Bela Hamid, an ecologist by training
Kate Ho, MSc in Technology and Innovation Management and now finishing her PhD in Informatics,
Jessica Williamson, MSc in Science and Technology Policy and Management, and
Hilary Singer, whose work is encouraging students into entrepreneurship at Launch.ed and SIE.

The aim of Startup Cafe is to cover the development, challenges and triumphs of Scotland’s startups and in doing create an ecosystem in Scotland that fosters startups. As someone who has at least 5 startups under my belt I know what a benefit it would have been to be to be able to connect with like-minded business people. It’s all well and good speaking to the guys and gals at Business Gateway or the like but there are times when you really need to talk to someone who has not only ‘been there and done that‘ but to someone who is ‘there now and doing it now‘! Business is about people as much as it is about expertise and finance and is great to see this platform that allows budding entrepreneurs to share the real and human elements of building a successful business from nothing.

Jessica Williamson came over to Edinburgh from the US for her 3rd Year in Economics and decided to stay! She completed her MSc in Science and Technology Policy and Management in Scotland. For some, Silicon Valley is the place to be, and while she is now a convert to Silicon Glen, Jess retains that Silicon Valley ‘can do‘ attitude.

I met Jess earlier this month and asked her about Startup Cafe.

“StartupCafe is a cheerful blog covering the startup community around Edinburgh, bringing a spotlight and a splash of humour to Scotland’s active startup scene. Running since June 2009, we are a fun and lively place to get startup news and hear about events and resources for entrepreneurs.”

“What we love about Scotland is all the support available for starting companies, and the huge pool of talented people in tech, design, and business. But as we contemplated our own businesses and bounced around from tech events to entrepreneurial events, it struck us that communities were segregated and lacking a central hub for information.”

“So, naturally we took matters into our own hands and joined forces to get the blog running. We’re now a team of five, each working for different startups or support organisations, with backgrounds spanning computer science, physics, ecology, and business.”

“We’re really excited when stories springboard from us to the Guardian or other publications – we love being a place to celebrate local successes from awards to funding deals to product launches. We hope that in addition to helping connect the local community, that we can continue to raise awareness that Scotland is a vibrant place for startups – watch out world!”

“We welcome contributions from guest bloggers, and we’re delighted by cups of coffee and cupcakes, so feel free to get in touch at”

Startup Cafe is run without financial support from either university or government and so if you feel you can help support this hugely important and exciting project, click here. Thanks

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