New Hub to boost business

A £7m scheme to help promote business growth in Lancashire has won funding from the European Regional Development Fund.

The Lancashire Business Growth Hub will enable businesses to create more than 1,200 jobs by 2015, safeguard a further 700 and boost the Lancashire economy by £20m. Through the hub, firms with high growth potential will be prioritised for access to practical specialist advice, coaching and mentoring. It will bring a package of growth-related services together in one place around the firm.

The Lancashire Business Growth Hub will stimulate growth by matching firms with high growth potential with finance and equity networks, as well as other professional and knowledge services.

Companies including those based in Blackpool and the Fylde Coast will access the hub through a simple, one-stop portal which gives local companies easy access to existing and specially-commissioned quality business growth support. Services will include:

- Practical advice and support for companies who want to develop new products and new markets

- Access to a world-class programme of management and leadership development through leading business and academic thinkers

- Experienced business mentors matched to growing businesses

- Support for businesses who want to develop their workforce

- Help for businesses seeking accommodation

- Support for businesses seeking finance/working capital The hub is underpinned by a partnership between Lancashire County Council, University of Central Lancashire, Lancaster University, Regenerate Pennine Lancashire and Winning Pitch. For more information on The Lancashire Business Growth Hub contact

The Lancashire Business Hub project is part financed by the North West European Regional Development Fund programme 2007 to 2013.

The Department for Communities and Local Government is the managing authority for the European Regional Development Fund Programme, which is one of the funds established by the European Commission to

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