High-speed Internet Launches in the North East
In 1999, PNE Group launches ‘Big Netty’, providing the first high-speed internet service in the North East. Recognising the significance of technology to drive innovation and enterprise, the Group installs a 2mb pipe providing high-speed broadband internet access for all of its sites. This begins the development of a cluster of 70 new media businesses in its “Silicon Alley” in Pink Lane, which quickly gained a reputation as a leading new digital and media centre throughout the UK and internationally. This was upgraded to 80MB in 2010, providing PNE Group tenant businesses with state of the art, super-fast broadband connectivity. This important service to hi-tech businesses in the region gains North East Workspace the One2One regional business support award in 2000.
North East Workspace’s Pink Lane Property Portfolio is Voted a Top Ten Science-Based Incubator
North East Workspace’s Pink Lane property portfolio is voted one of the world’s top ten “science-based incubators” by the Science Alliance and Centre for Strategy and Evaluation Services (CSES). High-speed internet not accessible in other parts of the region and local, free business support services, both provided by PNE Group, motivate large numbers of digital and design start-ups to take residence, resulting in a thriving, industry hub that earned Pink Lane the nickname “Silicon Alley” and put Newcastle on the international map. When the project started, there was a business failure rate of 35%, which fell to approximately 5% under the incubator conditions.