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Helping potential entrepreneurs take first business steps

Posted on June 9th, 2017

A new free programme to help would-be entrepreneurs in Derbyshire set up their own business is being run by enterprise agency Erewash Partnership in Erewash and Amber Valley.

The starter workshops and mentoring support is being delivered on behalf of the Chamber as part of a county-wide initiative that is funded by Derbyshire County and Derby City Councils and Derby and Derbyshire Economic Partnership.

Residents have to enrol and register through the Partnership. They are given a package of tailored support and arrangements will be made for them to attend up to four workshops. The workshop experience will be followed by advice from a mentor.

Experienced professionals will lead the workshops, which will take place at locations in Erewash and Amber Valley.

The workshops, running from Tuesday (13 June) and continuing into July include subjects such as understanding your market and how to reach it, business planning, bookkeeping, and starting with social media.

Another series will be held in October and November at Ripley Town Hall, again for residents of the two areas.

The Partnership has an excellent record of helping people start businesses, nurturing them while they develop and continuing to give advice and help once established.

Now in its 23rd year of supporting enterprise, the Partnership has signed a new three-year service level agreement with Erewash Borough Council to help regenerate the area's economy.

In the past three years, it helped 275 businesses set up in Erewash and Amber Valley, delivering over 1,600 advisory sessions. It also helped more than 500 established businesses.

Regeneration projects managed by the Partnership have brought more than 32,000sq ft of disused commercial space back into use, including its own prominent headquarters in Long Eaton town centre. Through the Golden Hello programme of grants, 19 shops in Ilkeston and Long Eaton have been given a new lease of life.

Ian Viles
In the past three years the Partnership has delivered 68 networking events and seminars and 14 town centre events, including the highly popular heritage and classic vehicle show in Ilkeston, a free event which this year will take place on August 13.

Chief executive Ian Viles said: “I am delighted at what we have achieved, often beating our targets. The Partnership is more than just a networking organisation of 450 members. We have had a positive impact on the local economy, through supporting start-ups, advising established businesses and bringing commercial properties back into use.

“I have no doubt that the new programme will lead to another crop of successful businesses.”