Posted on May 11, 2017 by staff

Google’s Sarah Drinkwater ‘deeply proud’ of contribution


Sarah Drinkwater, head of Google’s Campus London, has said how proud she is of the work the team is doing with the city’s business evangelists and fledgling firms.

She is particularly pleased with the diversity within the Campus community, which has grown to 70,000 strong in just five years.

Google Campus London is a space for the city’s entrepreneurs and start-up community.

“We were lucky to launch in 2012, when London start-ups were really taking off, and I’m deeply proud of our contribution,” she told BusinessCloud.

“It’s now 38 per cent female and with over 160 nationalities.”

She’s also a proud mentor, which explains why the Campus hosts mentoring every Friday with ‘Googlers’.

“10 per cent of all London Googlers mentored start-ups through our program,” she says.

“I mentor often because I believe in giving back; the topics and challenges vary often but the core is that people want to be heard and supported.”

Despite being a high-flyer in the tech world now, Drinkwater is a relative newcomer to the tech scene, working as a journalist and writer in a previous life.

“What excites me about tech is that, while it’s tempting to think of it as a distinct vertical aside from traditional ones like transport or publishing, it is simply a tool influencing how we use nearly every product, from mass-made clothes to the phones we use to anchor our lives,” she said.

“Convergence, where seemingly different fields come together, is what I get really excited about.”

Being excited about technology and able to see how it applies to any field is crucial in her job as head of Campus London, Google’s first physical hub for start-ups.

The hub has now expanded to six sites, with Campus Berlin launching at the end of 2017 and the aim is to provide founders and start-ups with best-in-class Google programs, workspace and a supportive community.

Ensuring that the support on offer is there for those that need it most, she also helped to establish the UK’s first baby-friendly start-up school, Campus for Mums, which takes on 35 mums and dads from a larger applicant pool.

“These are high-flying parents looking to build their first start-up,” she added.

“Over ten weeks, we take them through the core curriculum, from ideation to user research, customer acquisition and fundraising.”