Posted on January 19, 2017 by staff

Manchester needs ‘halo’ to take it to next tech level


Manchester needs a big brand company to take it to the next tech level, according to a social and mobile data enetrepreneur.

After arriving to study for his PhD at the University of Manchester in 2010, Andrew Ko never left the city – and he hopes his firm Personalyze can be the halo brand it needs.

The 38-year-old has been involved in the start-up ecosystem since moving to the area, and he completed his studies in 2014.

He said: “The city definitely needs an example company to take it to the next level.

“Every entrepreneur needs inspiration during their journey, so a halo brand would help that immensely.

“I’m hoping that I can make Personalyze become a beacon of tech hope for the North.”

In its early stages, Personalyze is a data-driven tech firm which enables brands to understand customer behaviour on social and mobile platforms.

A thought leader on the Big Data revolution in social experiences, Andrew’s doctoral research involved exploring how emotions and context shaped people’s social identities and experience.

This research later became the foundation for Personalyze’s proprietary technology.

“Manchester is an up-and-coming international city, and I always like getting in early on something rather than going the established route,” he said.

“The advantage Manchester has over others is the cost of living and the world-class university network that is in and around the city.”

He added: “It has developed quite rapidly over the past 3 years.

“I’ve been involved in the start-up ecosystem here in the city since 2010, so I’ve seen it in its infancy.

“It didn’t grow as quickly the first three years I’ve been here, but the last three have grown by leaps and bounds. It’s still not quite up to the level of London, obviously, but it’s slowly getting there.”

Andrew is appearing at BusinessCloud’s talk on the future of Manchester’s Digital Tech Scene on January 27.

Attendees will be given the opportunity to hear from some of the digital tech businesses and local entrepreneurial talent across the area, focusing on their journeys and their future growth aspirations.

Andrew said: “I’m hoping to meet potential clients that want to use our data to help them understand their customers better, as well as potential investors for our current fundraise round.”