Boost, Lancashire’s Business Growth Hub, has been given a further £3.2 million to continue supporting Lancashire’s business community with a wide range of fully-funded support services.
The financial commitment from Lancashire County Council and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) will mean Boost’s current support offering will continue until June 2023.
Lancashire County Council will provide £1.3m while the ERDF will contribute £1.9m to Boost, which has so far supported 8,000 business, helped to create 3,000 jobs and generated more than £100m in economic activity since its inception in July 2013.
During its next phase from January 2022 to June 2023, Boost will support 800 businesses, create 880 jobs and support 100 new business startups, adding £4m to the Lancashire economy.
Lancashire County Council will also review Boost’s support structure during this period to ensure that, after June 2023, its offering continues to be aligned to the changing needs of business.
County Councillor Aidy Riggott, cabinet member for economic development and growth, Lancashire County Council, said: “Boost is a vital part of Lancashire’s business support ecosystem and this was brought into focus as the Growth Hub supported thousands of business owners and leaders during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Lancashire County Council is delighted to continue our commitment to Boost which will mean Lancashire business owners and managers will be able to continue to access this vital funded service as they recover from the challenges of the past two years and focus on the future.
“Since it was established in 2013, Boost has evolved as the economy and the needs of the county’s business leaders have changed. This next phase of Boost will mean Lancashire business leaders will be able to access support on current emerging challenges and opportunities. These include changing international markets, the rise of remote working, the increasing focus on net zero and the need for resilience planning.”
During the next phase of Boost, the Growth Hub will continue its direct support for four fully funded programmes, including:
- Business Relationship Management; a dedicated advisory service helping business owners navigate the local, regional and national public and private sector business support landscape to find the right support for them.
- Flying Start: a dedicated business support programme for startups and new businesses.
- Growth Mentoring: providing strategic mentoring support from experienced business people to help business owners tackle specific challenges and capitalise on opportunities.
- Boost Bespoke: a dedicated programme which provides bespoke support to help ambitious Lancashire businesses scale up, access new markets, boost productivity and become more resilient to change.
The services will be delivered by a range of expert organisations who will work with Lancashire County Council to ensure all businesses receive the best possible support.
Andrew Leeming, programme manager, Boost said: “During the next phase of Boost we are keen to help Lancashire businesses that haven’t used our support yet.
“If you’re a business owner or entrepreneur looking to grow, develop your products or processes or you just need some support to tackle an issue you are facing, get in touch with Boost and we will make sure you get the right support.
“If you have used Boost before, we would love to have another conversation with you. As well as our own funded support programmes, we work with a wide range of support services across Lancashire. Whatever your challenge, we will be able to connect you to Lancashire’s brilliant business support ecosystem. It all starts with a conversation with Boost.”
Boost is led by Lancashire County Council and the Lancashire LEP (Local Enterprise Partnership). In addition to the support of funding from Lancashire County Council and the ERDF, Boost utilises funds from the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy to support Lancashire businesses.
Lancashire business owners and managers can get in touch with Boost by calling 0800 488 0057 or contacting Boost online.