Network aims to boost mentoring

A NEW networking club has been launched to link students at the Eastern Enterprise Hub with the region’s business community.

The 5th Floor Business Club, named after the hub’s location within the James Hehir Building on the Ipswich Waterfront, is intended to help provide mentoring, work placements and bursaries for young business people and social entrepreneurs.

Harry Berry, chairman of the Eastern Enterprise Hub, formally launched the club at a reception for an invited audience of business leaders.

They were given an insight into opportunities to get involved with budding social entrepreneurs studying at the new School for Social Entrepreneurs Suffolk, which forms part of the hub, as well as start-up private sector enterprises being assisted through its Enterprise Academy.

Speakers at the event included Matthew Cole from Prettys Solicitors, a founder member of club, who highlighted the need to support start-up enterprises.

“Prettys is delighted to be involved with the Eastern Enterprise Hub from such an early stage,” he said.

“This is an amazing opportunity for businesses to connect with entrepreneurs, start-ups and social enterprises and it is incredible to see just how much has been achieved already.”

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Luke Gusman of Sales Media Evolution described the challenges facing young entrepreneurs and explained how the enterprise hub could help bridge the gap between education and business.

“Connecting with businesses is one of the hardest things when you’re starting out, especially as a young entrepreneur, but the hub provides the perfect platform to meet and network with important contacts,” he said.

Celia Hodson, director of the Eastern Enterprise Hub, added: “Now is the time for more business to get involved and show their commitment to creating the entrepreneurs of tomorrow.

“At the hub we promote enterprise responsibility, drive entrepreneurship and develop skills across the region.

“The 5th Floor is one of the ways that we do this,” she added.