Journalists most important tech influencers in Tyto Tech 500 – but Richard Branson still tops list

Richard Branson tops Tyto Tech 500 list of most influential voices for tech industry 2023

The seventh annual Tyto Tech 500 awards reveals a major transformation in the pan-European technology landscape as journalists are identified as the most influential voices for the tech industry in 2023.

The number of journalists placed in the Tech 500 ranking has risen by 38% since 2021 and now make up 198 of the 500 most influential individuals in the list ( editor Chris Price is in 51st place in the UK, one place behind Money Saving Expert Martin Lewis – you can see full list here). 

The Tech 500 identifies the most influential individuals in the technology sector across the UK, Germany, France, the Netherlands and Sweden.

The pan-European Tech 500 reveals that influential figures predominantly come from four major tech sectors: General Tech, EnterpriseTech, FinTech, and ConsumerTech. This collectively constitutes over half (58%) of the total influencers ranked in the Tyto Tech 500 and mirrors the previous year, where these sectors similarly commanded the top positions.

However, two sectors have demonstrated remarkable growth in influence in recent years: SpaceTech and Cybersecurity. In two years, the number of influencers related to SpaceTech has risen by 350% and Cybersecurity by 43%. Below are the main trends:

  • Journalists reign among the elite of European tech influence: Nearly 40% of the most influential personalities in the pan-European Tech 500 are journalists, knocking business leaders out of the top spot for industry influence for the first time. Journalists featured in the list of the top 20 most influential individuals include François Sorel, Broadcaster for BFM Business; Sarah Butler, Retail Correspondent at The Guardian; and Jonathan Amos, Science Correspondent at the BBC.   
  • Influence in the European tech industry is heavily weighted towards the private sector: 37% of the most influential figures in the pan-European tech industry are business leaders although the group has relinquished its longstanding grip on first place to journalists. At a country level, business leaders make up 51% of the most influential in the UK, 70% in France, 64% in Germany, 62% in Sweden and 25% in the Netherlands. For the second consecutive year, Richard Branson, British business magnate, investor and founder of the Virgin Group is identified as the most influential person in the European technology sector.  
  • The gender gap narrows as the number of women in tech continues to grow: Female representation in the pan-European Tech 500 has increased from 22% in 2021 to 27% in 2023. Most female influencers belong to the business leader and journalist categories, accounting for 78% of women in the pan-European top 500. The UK leads the way for female representation as 30% of the country’s top tech influencers are female, closely followed by Germany (28%), France (23%), Sweden (21%) and the Netherlands (15%). Individuals featured in the pan-European top 50 include Annalena Baerbock, Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs of Germany; Helen Dickinson, CEO of the British Retail Consortium; Sarah Butler, Retail Correspondent at The Guardian, Caroline Lucas, Member of Parliament, UK, and Parmy Olson, Technology Columnist at Bloomberg.  

The top 10 influencers for Europe in 2023 are: 

1.       Richard Branson – Founder, Virgin 

2.       François Sorel – Radio journalist and TV anchor, BFM Business 

3.       George Freeman – UK Minister of State for Science, Research, Technology and Innovation  

4.       Alok Sharma – President, COP26  

5.       Jonathan Brearley – CEO, Ofgem  

6.       Patrick Vallance – Non-Executive Director, ARIA  

7.       Robert Habeck – Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Climate Protection, German government  

8.       Annalena Baerbock – Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs, German government  

9.       Helen Dickinson – CEO, British Retail Consortium  

10.   Sarah Butler – Retail Correspondent, The Guardian  

The top 10 influencers in the UK for 2023 are:

1.       Richard Branson – Founder, Virgin  

2.       George Freeman – UK Minister of State for Science, Research, Technology and Innovation 

3.       Alok Sharma – President, COP26  

4.       Jonathan Brearley – CEO, Ofgem 

5.       Patrick Vallance – Non-Executive Director, ARIA 

6.       Helen Dickinson – CEO, British Retail Consortium 

7.       Sarah Butler – Retail Correspondent, The Guardian 

8.       Mark Carney – Special Envoy on Climate Action and Finance, United Nations  

9.       John Edwards – Information Commissioner, Information Commissioner’s Office  

10.   Dan Milmo – Global Technology Editor, The Guardian  

 Says Zoë Clark, Senior Partner and Head of Media and Influence at Tyto:

“During a time of global economic uncertainty, war and geopolitical tensions, climate change, and rising concern over new technological innovations such as AI, we have seen journalists come to the fore  as people seek objective and trustworthy information.” 

“Despite the burgeoning influence of social media platforms, the pervasive issue of disinformation, and the relentless spread of fake news, it is evident that people continue to rely on reputable news media. The 2023 edition of the Tech 500 is an illuminating insight into who is influential in the pan-European landscape and will empower European firms eyeing expansion as well as international companies, especially from the US, looking to plant their flag on European soil.” 

To download the full Tech 500 report, please visit: 


Chris Price