Project streamlines business support

BUSINESSES in Suffolk have been given a major boost following the launch of an innovative project.

BUSINESSES in Suffolk have been given a major boost following the launch of an innovative project.

Choose Suffolk's Enterprise Engagement Programme (EEP) will pump �1.2million into a range of services including expert advice and financial support for start-up and established companies.

The four-year initiative is expected to tread new ground by uniting several organisations which previously would have been competing for the same funding.

The consortium - consisting of the Suffolk Chamber of Commerce and the enterprise agencies of Menta and Ipsenta - will be managed by Choose Suffolk.


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Funding will be assessed and distributed by Genix Holdings, which was previously known as Business Link for Suffolk, a different group to the current Business Link organisation.

Speaking at the launch in Ipswich yesterday, Terry Clark, chairman of Genix Holdings, said the project would add to the positive work already undertaken by Suffolk County Council and campaigns in Suffolk's media.

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“Businesses need not only to survive, but prosper, and in doing so help develop the economy of Suffolk to our mutual benefit,” he said at the Ip-City Centre in Bath Street.

He added: “Traditionally there have been a range of organisations working in different ways throughout the county.

“The EEP changes that and recognises that by working in partnership they can achieve more than by working independently. Within each organisation their own individual focus and programmes will continue.”

Celia Hodson, chief executive of Choose Suffolk, said a network service had also been set up offering peer-to-peer advice from similar businesses.

“If you are a butcher's shop, the best thing you can do is talk to a butcher,” she said.

Other help on offer includes:

Financial support with three years' business banking from the Royal Bank of Scotland;

Support for businesses to relocate or expand;

Access to important economic data and forecasts;

Free legal advice worth up to �375;

For more information about the Enterprise Engagement Programme, please call Celia Hodson on 0844 499 0888 or visit choosesuffolk.com.

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