By Paul Spencer, director at Haworths Chartered Accountants.
Lancashire businesses now have a wide choice of funding alternatives they can explore as they look to grow and develop.
The challenge is making sure that they find the right fit for them. Advice is out there and getting the right business support can make all the difference.
And it would seem that growing numbers of businesses are taking advantage of that help.
Lancashire’s business growth hub, Boost, has recently revealed its latest statistics, which highlight that it has helped 2,888 businesses in the county to access business support.
The figures also reveal Boost’s work has led to the creation of an estimated 291 new jobs since January 2016 when the growth hub secured £7.8m of funding to run for a further three years.
In that time 119 new businesses have been established and £3.5m of new economic activity has been generated.
Boost, which is approaching the half-way point of its funding period, is led by the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and Lancashire County Council, and supported by funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
A wide range of free and part-funded business support is available through Boost in areas including mentoring, access to finance, innovation, skills and training.
As well as attracting thousands of businesses looking for tailored support, more than 100 firms have joined Boost & Co, a collective of private sector providers who promote the service to their clients and contacts.
The latest phase of the service aims to support 3,360 businesses in the county, creating 2,000 jobs and helping to establish 200 new businesses.
A first phase of Boost between July 2013 and July 2015 provided support to over 2,800 businesses across Lancashire creating over 1,200 jobs
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