Richard Jeffery, Director of Growth at GC Business Growth Hub

New figures show that more than 3,265 businesses across Greater Manchester – more than 460 on average each month – have received help, support and guidance from the Growth Company, including the GC Business Growth Hub, between March and September 2020 alone.

The Growth Company provided access to more than £10m of finance to Greater Manchester businesses during this time and has helped secure and create 938 new jobs.

Now, as the UK experiences its second nationwide lockdown this year, leaders from the GC Business Growth Hub, part of the Growth Company and part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund, are reminding businesses across the region that vital help and support remains available to them through a range of free-to-access programmes and services.

To encourage businesses to continue to reach out and make the most of the opportunities available, from Monday 9 – Monday 30 November the Hub will be promoting local businesses that have been impacted by COVID-19. Those wishing to participate are encouraged to engage with the Hub on its social channels via the hashtag #HereforBusiness.

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Richard Jeffery, director of business growth for GC Business Growth Hub, said: “While thousands of Greater Manchester business owners have been receiving vital assistance and support from the Hub over this challenging year, we’re acutely aware there are many others who stand to benefit from the services and expertise that we provide.

“Our team of business experts is on standby for another surge of inquiries throughout this lockdown period. We encourage businesses to come forward – no matter how great or small the challenge for each organisation, we offer trusted counsel and many solutions that can help to navigate the choppy waters.”

GC Business Growth Hub has been operating across Greater Manchester since 2011. The Hub adapted its business model under the Here for Business campaign at the very start of the COVID-19 pandemic, continuing to provide trusted, impartial and accessible information and programmes of support centred around the latest guidance and restrictions that are impacting business.

Some of the current services that are available remotely from the Hub under its ‘#HereForBusiness campaign include:

  • Access to Finance (fully funded, bespoke finance support for eligible businesses with no fees, commission or introduction costs)
  • Energy Efficiency Grants (to help eligible businesses make upgrades that will slash energy bills and improve their environmental impact)
  • Global Scale-up (a fully funded programme to help businesses scale-up operations through exports and strategic international growth)
  • GM Digital Drive (a fully funded initiative to help any Greater Manchester improve their digital presence)
  • – Innovation Vouchers (enabling eligible businesses to apply for up to £5,000 match funding to access academic expertise, research, and specialist facilities)
  • Leadership and Mentoring services (various)
  • Made for Manufacturing (an online programme for manufacturing leaders, running January to March 2021, with a 27 November application deadline)
  • Peer Networks (a national programme bringing together business leaders to collaborate and solve common issues)

There are many other services being delivered by GC Business Growth Hub with new programmes launched regularly to respond to the challenging market conditions. From guidance on setting up a new business to navigating business regulation, breaking into new markets and deploying effective digital infrastructure, more information can be found here: https://www.businessgrowthhub.com/services

Businesses looking to access specialist support can visit www.businessgrowthhub.com for more information about the organisation’s extensive range of services. This and other GC Business Growth Hub projects are part-financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the GM Business Growth Hub project designed to help ambitious SME businesses achieve growth and increase employment in Greater Manchester. The Hub is also supported by the Greater Manchester Combined Authority and Greater Manchester local authorities.

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