Wednesday, May 11, 2016

News: Launchpad key to growth

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Rotherham entrepreneurs are able to get further support they need to get their business to take off with the new £4m Sheffield City Region (SCR) Launchpad programme.

A key part of the Local Enterprise Partnership's Growth Hub that acts as a gateway for businesses to access specialist support, Launchpad involves a consortium of the region's local authorities, and the Princes Trust.

People just starting to think about working for themselves and new business owners keen to grow their companies and create jobs can quickly access a wide range of new and existing business advice, workshops, seminars, one-to-one coaching and mentoring services.

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Anna Smith, programme manager of the SCR Launchpad, said: "Launchpad has been set up to ensure that wherever entrepreneurs are based in our region, whether in the city of Sheffield, in our growing towns or in rural communities, everyone has equal access to the best quality business development support.

"Its aim is to ensure that no-one misses out on the support they need to help them set up and grow their business. Wherever they are based they can contact Launchpad and a start-up business advisor will talk through their business aims, discuss their needs and signpost them to the most appropriate support."

Developed and delivered under the SCR Growth Hub banner, Rotherham Investment & Development Office (RiDO) has committed £158,607 to the project and will act as a delivery partner. A Business Start Up Developer will be on hand to support the borough's new start businesses.

Led by Barnsley Council's business support arm, Enterprising Barnsley, the programme secured £2.4m though the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the Europe Union's support for the region's economic development. Running to 2019, it aims to support over 500 enterprises, 200 of them being new enterprises.

James Newman, Chair of the Sheffield City Region European Structural Investment Funds Sub-Committee, said: "Through unprecedented collaboration across the Sheffield City Region's local authorities and business community we have co-ordinated all our efforts to identify and support pre-start and early stage businesses with growth potential.

"Our ultimate aim is to increase economic growth and create jobs through fostering the development of new businesses across the whole region. The simple message is that if you want to set up and grow a business in the City Region you should contact Launchpad and its team of advisors can help you access a region-wide network of support.

"This is exactly the type of programme that European funding should be supporting and we expect Launchpad to become the definitive springboard for successful business start-ups in the Sheffield City Region."

Also now .under the Growth Hub banner, the Y-Accelerator, which was successfully piloted in Rotherham last year is set to return

SCR Growth Hub website
RiDO website

Images: SCR Growth Hub

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