A high-profile technology startup competition backed by London mayor Boris Johnson and promising a £1 million equity investment to the winner has been shelved.
Launched last summer, the Million Pound Startup competition was designed to promote London as a tech hub, offering young firms from around the world the chance of a £1 million equity investment as well as legal, consulting and PR support if they moved to London.
Among the wheezes used to build hype, organiser Digital Shoreditch promised reporters the chance of a one per cent share in the equity investment for writing about the competition.
Yet, despite attracting more than 1000 applications from over 70 countries which were then whittled down to a final 20 in September, the competition was shelved, according to the Guardian.
The orgnaisers decided that none of the finalists were suitable and in October the £433,000 raised from around 200 investors was returned.
There are no plans to rerun the competition and the Million Pound Startup Web site has disappeared.
Meanwhile, the Digital Shoreditch Festival 2014 - designed to showcase the capital's tech scene - has been cancelled just two days before it was set to begin on 27 March.
In a notice on its Web site, Digital Shoreditch says that "after 3 years of Digital Shoreditch, it seems that its time for us to focus our attention onto bringing new perspectives into the mix. To refresh. To ensure we're super relevant. We want to create completely new types of events and competitions.
However, according to the Guardian, the event, being eagerly promoted just a fortnight ago, is shutting down partly because of a lack of resources.