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Private sector throws weight behind Boost

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Lancashire’s private sector business support community has signed up to give its backing to the county’s £7.2m business growth hub as part of a plan to grow the local economy.

Boost Business Lancashire has recruited its first 12 firms to act as champions of the service and to refer their ambitious clients and members to Boost’s range of free and part-funded business support programmes. Business support groups, accounting, legal, marketing and financial services firms are among those who have joined Boost & Co, as the partnership is known.

They include Nineteen Legal, Natwest, Haworths Accountants, Mayes Accountants, Inovaris, Federation of Small Business, NXO, Shout Network, Moore and Smalley, Harrison Drury and Woodcocks Haworth and Nuttall.

 Andrew Leeming, senior projects officer for Lancashire County Council, said: “We passionately believe that the wider business support community provides an invaluable service to growing businesses within Lancashire. “Simply put, without the accountants, law firms, venture capital firms, banks, colleges, professional and business membership groups, media organisations and other relevant bodies, Lancashire would not be a great place to do business.

“By being part of Boost & Co, member firms can help their clients and members access and benefit from Boost’s funded business support programmes.” Boost aims to grow the county’s economy by £20m, create at least 1,200 new jobs and safeguard 700 more by 2015.

It is being delivered through a partnership between Lancashire County Council, Community & Business Partners, Lancaster University, Regenerate Pennine Lancashire, University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) and Winning Pitch. £3.6m has been provided by the European Regional Development Fund(ERDF). Boost offers a range of services, some free and some part-funded, including:

  • Growth Mentoring by Community & Business Partners; providing high-growth mentoring support through successful business leaders who have already worked through similar challenges.
  • Lancashire Forum; an exclusive leadership peer-to-peer networking and development programme run by LancasterUniversity.
  • Lancashire LEAP; led by Winning Pitch and Regenerate Pennine Lancashire, providing advice to pre-start and early start (1-3 year-old) businesses.
  • UCLan’s Innovation Clinic; aimed at supporting advanced manufacturing and engineering companies to develop new products and move into new markets.
  • Growth Sectors Support; Specialist in-depth, independent, practical support to help businesses in the Creative & Digital, Environmental, Advanced Manufacturing, Aerospace and Finance sectors to accelerate business growth.
  • Growth Skills Assist; providing free training to equip leadership teams with the skills required to achieve their growth goals.
  • GrowthAccelerator, delivered in Lancashire by Winning Pitch; the national programme of coaching and advice for high-growth businesses.
  • Access to Finance; helping business owners to identify and access the right type of funding to deliver their growth aspirations.

Businesses can sign up to the programme through the website or call 0800 488 0057.

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