TECH ENTREPRENEURS THROW FINANCIAL WEIGHT BEHIND LONDON CODING SCHOOL
LONDON, 28 OCTOBER 2021: 01 Founders, a new coding school based in London, has received
significant financial support from three high profile tech entrepreneurs, in a public display of
commitment to changing the lives of 100,000 people, regardless of background.
Fund and Ric Lewis, founder of Tristan Capital Partners and The Black Heart Foundation, have
pledged £157K to kick-start a fund to support the living costs of learners at 01 Founders. They
join serial entrepreneurs already backing the school, including two-time unicorn founder
(Made.com, Lastminute.com) Brent Hoberman and Tezos founder Kathleen Breitman.
The first group of 79 learners to make it through a rigorous selection process and be accepted at
01 Founders include a chef, a musician, two bus drivers and an interior designer. They discovered
they possess a hidden talent and the high potential needed for software development. Providing
financial support for the learners is a key part of the answer to the diversity issues that challenge
the UK’s tech sector.
The financial commitments announced today open the door to students who would otherwise not
be able to afford to take up 01 Founders’ unique offer of two year’s full time learning, no
tuition-fees and the guarantee of a well-paid tech job at the end of it, thanks to partners that so
far include Peloton, Faculty and Nominet.
Joysy John, CEO at 01 Founders said: “As the first learners settle in at our campus, it is thrilling to
meet people who have made the courageous decision to embark on a highly technical career. The
leap from chef or bus driver to software developer may seem huge, but it reveals the talent
needed for a career in tech is often sitting there undiscovered. It is vital we can remove the
financial barriers that too often exclude some from a career in tech. I am immensely grateful to
Guy, Rajeev and Ric, our first set of supporters, whose generosity will make it possible for some of
our learners to embark on this life-changing course.”
01 Founders London campus is the first centre in the UK to use the proven learning methods
developed at the famous School 42 in Paris and since expanded into 40 countries. The approach is
dedicated to accessibility, requiring no previous experience or qualifications. It is based instead on
an online game that tests cognitive skills, creativity and resilience, followed by a rigorous
three-week selection process on campus. It ensures those who make it through selection have the
potential to achieve the levels of excellence required by the industry.
Guy Podjarny, founder of the $8.5bn London-based cybersecurity startup Snyk, said: “I have
committed my personal backing to fund support for learners at 01 Founders because its vision
matches my personal mission to diversify our industry. The goal of training 100,000 software engineers is deeply ambitious and yet, with the right coalition of support, I have no doubt we can
Ric Lewis, British businessman and founder of the Black Heart Foundation, said: “I benefited
from a good quality education and have seen all the advantages that brings, in particular to
talented individuals who may not have been picked out by the traditional school-university route.
01 Founders is providing a chance — for some a first chance to discover a talent that remained
hidden; for others a second chance with a life-changing career change. I want to help make sure
this chance is open to anyone with the talent to take it.”
01 Founders has been supported by Founders Forum, which is committed to providing more
access to entrepreneurship for learners. It has launched its first campus near Regents Park,
London, with Capital City College Group, a leading provider of adult skills training. 01 Founders
will make a significant contribution to the national push for greater skills development. The UK
government has prioritised adult skills and skills-based qualifications, with the Treasury set to
announce £3 billion in skills funding in the latest budget.
It is hoped that other founders, philanthropists and charities will offer financial support for the
learners at 01 Founders, to cover living costs during their two years on the programme.
For photographs, to arrange an interview with 01 Founders spokespeople or more information about 01 Founders contact:
Rebecca Spencer at Chapel End Communications
email@example.com / 07476 102531
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