New hub to support entrepreneurs opens its doors

New hub to support entrepreneurs opens its doors

North East business will now be able to access start-up support and advice, thanks to the North East’s newest enterprise accelerator.

Entrepreneurial Spark powered by NatWest and in partnership with KPMG Enterprise, Dell EMC and Pinsent Masons has opened its newest hub, or ‘Hatchery’, to 80 entrepreneurs now based in the NatWest building in Trinity Gardens, on Newcastle’s Quayside.

The Newcastle Hatchery is part of a network of 13hatcheries across the UK, which are set to support 7,000 entrepreneurs over the next five years.

The new businesses, or ‘chiclets’, enter the Hatchery for up to six months, with potential to continue for another 12 if they are among the most promising. Access to the Newcastle Hatchery includes physical office space with superfast internet, a start-up Bootcamp, dedicated mentoring from NatWest, KPMG Enterprise, Dell EMC and Pinsent Masons as well as regular events, workshops and training, all free of charge. A new intake of Chiclets will start at the Hatchery every six months.

Adrian McDonald, president EMEA enterprise business, Dell EMC, said: "Entrepreneurial Spark continues to provide considerable support to start-up business from all around the country. Its latest expansion into Newcastle and the North East of England opens another chapter that we are both pleased and proud to support."

Alison Rose, CEO of commercial and private banking at NatWest, said: "The results of our recent Entrepreneurship Monitor show that the current economic climate is impacting people’s confidence to start up a business particularly in the North East.

"It is clear that people want local support, local networks and local advice and this is why we have partnered with Entrepreneurial Spark setting up the hatcheries across the country to revolutionise the way we support entrepreneurs. Newcastle is highly entrepreneurial, and by providing the area’s aspiring business owners with first-class support, office space and Wi-Fi, as well as access to our people and networks, they will be able to concentrate on establishing and growing their business."

Entrepreneurial Spark’s last Impact Report, published at the start of 2016, shows 88% of start-ups and early stage entrepreneurs who have been through Entrepreneurial Spark’s unique enablement programme are still trading today.

Lucy-Rose Walker, CEO of Entrepreneurial Spark, said: "It goes without saying that we’re hugely excited to be arriving in the North East with the launch of the Newcastle Hatchery. We’ve been welcomed with open arms by the ecosystem who are all eager to #GoDo.

The Hatchery itself is a first class resource, powered by NatWest, and we have some exceptional high growth potential Chiclets in the Hatchery who we’re looking forward to enabling and accelerating their progression and scale."