Cycle training firm Go Velo has won a major contract with Lancashire County Council – in large part thanks to Boost Business Lancashire’s Growth Mentoring programme.

As well as securing the contract to deliver adult cycle training to businesses in East Lancashire, Go Velo had created an extra full-time job at its head office in Colne.

Go Velo, which was founded in 2009, uses more than 25 instructors to provide cycle training for organisations such as local authorities, schools and businesses in Lancaster and Heysham, Preston, Rossendale and Pendle.

Go Velo director Kirsti Grayson identified a growth opportunity in the East Lancashire adult cycle training contract. However, the tendering process meant producing in-depth marketing materials and Kirsti realised she would benefit from expert guidance. So she approached Boost after hearing about the Growth Mentoring programme from her neighbour Maureen Askew, who is a Boost mentor.

After initial consultations, Kirsti was matched with Lou Booth, a mentor at Community & Business Partners (CBP), which delivers the programme.

Kirsti said: “The help and support we received through Boost and specifically Lou Booth has been excellent. Lou came to every meeting prepared with very good ideas to help drive Go Velo forward and support us in the best way she could. Lou also put us in touch with a promotion company that created specialist marketing and promotional material to ensure a professional finish.

“The high quality service we received played a large part in winning the county council contract and we owe Lou and the Boost programme a big vote of thanks.”

The contract represents sustainable work for Go Velo’s sub-contracted instructors, until April 2016, as well as creating a permanent job to maintain the company’s image and enhance its reputation.

As well as the mentoring sessions, Kirsti attended a Skills Assist interactive procurement workshop that covered the documentation needed for a successful tender. In addition, Go Velo’s operations manager Nicola Hamilton benefited from Boost’s Sell, Sell, Sell workshop.

Jane Houghton-Fenning, business development director at CBP, added: “The Growth Mentoring was the ideal support for Kirsti and we are very pleased this contributed to Go Velo winning the contract.

“The mentor was specifically chosen as she had the right skills and experience to assist. Kirsti also understood the importance of the workshops offered by CBP to enhance her operational knowledge and support the growth journey. We know this contract will raise Go Velo’s profile and look forward to hearing how well they’re doing.”

Boost Business Lancashire is the £7.2m Lancashire Business Growth Hub, offering free and part-funded business support to ambitious and growing businesses. Delivered by Lancashire County Council and the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership, and supported by £3.6m from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), it aims to grow Lancashire’s economy by £20m and create at least 1,200 new jobs and safeguard 700 more by summer 2015.

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