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250 entrepreneurs gather for inaugural growth summit

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  • Vision 2021 event at Preston’s Guild Hall to shine a light on businesses’ growth ambitions
  • Summit is first major event since the launch of the #GrowingLancashire campaign
  • County entrepreneurs gather to share ideas and hear success stories
  • #GrowingLancashire aims to support 4,118 Lancashire businesses, create 2,891 jobs and help establish 699 new businesses
  • Boost is led and run by Lancashire Enterprise Partnership and Lancashire County Council

More than 250 entrepreneurs from across Lancashire will gather today for a major growth summit aimed at supporting new and growing businesses in the county over the next five years. Vision 2021 is taking place throughout the day at Preston’s Guild Hall and has been staged to showcase the support available to Lancashire businesses and help put them on the path to growth.

Hosted by Boost; Lancashire’s Business Growth Hub, it is the first major event since the launch of its campaign to grow the county’s economy by £50m by 2018 The #GrowingLancashire campaign aims to advise and assist more than 4,000 businesses in the county, creating almost 3,000 jobs and helping to establish nearly 700 new businesses by 2018. Businesses supported by Boost are expected to see their turnover increase by a collective £50m – growing Lancashire’s economy. 

Andrew Leeming, Boost programme manager, said: “Vision 2021 is gathering the county’s entrepreneurs in one room and helping and assisting them on their growth journey. We’ll be shining a light on how Boost can help businesses grow, what support is available to help business achieve results and importantly we’ll hear from entrepreneurs who have been there and done it.

The aim is to provide Lancashire’s businesses with all the information they need to help them realise their potential.” Vision 2021 will provide attendees with information on what they can do now to help grow their business and make it more successful in the future. 

Businesses will hear from keynote speakers Emma Jones of Enterprise Nation and Khalid Saifullah of Star Tissue UK Ltd. Other speakers include John Leach and Steve Young from Boost deliver partner, Winning Pitch, Peter Collins from Fast Forward Growth and Graham Cowley of the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership.

Event organiser, Rona McFall, head of entrepreneurial solutions at Winning Pitch, said: “Today is about driving business growth, which ultimately will benefit the county as a whole. Growing a new or existing business is hard work, but having 200 business in one room with ideas and experiences which they can share with others and also learn from we believe will be a huge help.” The funded business support programmes available from Boost include:

  • Growth Support Programme, provided by Winning Pitch and Enterprise4all: Practical advice, support and coaching for owners of high-growth start-ups and early-start businesses.
  • Growth Mentoring, provided by Community & Business Partners and Orvia: Support for SME business owners from experienced mentors in areas such as business planning, finance, sales, marketing and HR.
  • Innovation Clinic, provided by UCLan: Support in areas like product design, engineering, testing and prototype development to enable business owners to grow through innovation and development of new products and services.
  • Access to Finance, provided by North West Access to Finance: Free finance consultancy support to help Lancashire SME businesses identify and apply for suitable forms of growth finance.

Businesses can apply for Boost support by calling 0800 488 0057 or by filling in this 'contact us' form.

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