Roger Marsh, OBE
AD:VENTURE, the ERDF funded programme providing businesses that have been trading for less than three years with practical support and match-funded grants, has been awarded an extension by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG).
Testament to the success of the programme, which has actively worked with over 1,513 businesses and 1,019 individuals, AD:VENTURE will now run to 2021, making it a six year programme with a value of £18.2m.
Engaging with 710 young people to explore enterprise or self-employment and delivering a schedule of more than 200 events, resulting in 287 additional jobs, the balance of practical and grant assisted support delivered by professionals has provided significant benefits to business.
Furthermore, 96 organisations have received match-funded grants over the period, with 125 approved projects, representing a total combined worth of £2.3m, securing £665,849 from the AD:VENTURE programme.
Delivered by a consortium of public, private and sector organisations, the programme offers tailored packages of support to start-up businesses throughout the Leeds City Region.
Access to workshops, seminars and specialist sessions is complemented by one-to-one assistance from professional Business Advisors that create bespoke responses to the needs of each organisation and the challenges that they are facing to growth and future success.
Chair of the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP) andNP11, Roger Marsh OBE, comments: “The success of the AD:VENTURE programme really does tell its own story. The business community throughout the Leeds City Region is vibrant, diverse and growing. Having ongoing access to the support, advice and guidance from experts, as well as funding provision, can only enhance this further.
“Knowing that start-ups and young organisations are attending workshops and accessing the bespoke help that they need is reassuring. It shows that we have in place the provision we need to nurture entrepreneurship across our region and to become an example of best practice for others.”
Working with partners across Bradford, Calderdale, Craven, Harrogate, Kirklees, Leeds, Selby, Wakefield and York, the AD:VENTURE programme will continue to deliver the same model of support across each town and city.
Stephanie Moran, couture designer based in Tadcaster, comments: “I was working as a freelance and although I was securing commissions I was finding it hard to work out how to take my business to the next stage. That’s when I was informed of AD:VENTURE and I realised that with some support I could put my plans into practice.
“I knew that my real ambition and longer-term goal was to open a couture bridal boutique with studio and showroom. Thanks to the opportunity to gain funding, I was able to do this. My brides deserve the very best and with the boutique that’s exactly what I am able to give them.”
Rob Moores, founding director of Growing Better based in Leeds, comments: “Accessing practical support from AD:VENTURE allowed us to build up our business plan and in turn to consider other options. We realised that we had the potential, with funding support, to commit to appointing three new members to the team over 2018. This, in turn, would allow us to support more people and to grow the business.
“Knowing that we have a business model in place that we could scale up was great. As well as working with an increasing number of people that have mental health illnesses, we have also started to supply several restaurants, which in turn gives us the funds to put back into the business.”
Director of Crimson Bear based in Craven, Paul Johnson, comments: “When we launched the business we always intended to grow but by accessing the AD:VENTURE programme we were able to move our plans forward and put them into practice far sooner. Thanks to the grant and the practical support we were able to benefit from, we are now on track to turnover £2m, which is excellent news.”
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