Economy and Transport Secretary Ken Skates
The Wrexham Enterprise Hub is celebrating an industrious first eight months where it’s held more than thirty events and workshops and supported more than 170 individuals and businesses since launching.
The Wrexham Enterprise Hub was officially launched by Economy and Transport Secretary Ken Skates in May and is located in the old Iceland building on Rhosddu Road, Queens Square. The pilot for four other regional hubs, it is building a community of entrepreneurs who are already boosting the local economy.
As well as providing a home for startups and freelancers, the Hub has also held several events, ranging from tech-focussed days such as the Google Garage workshop and the Darganfod Science Festival, through to large-scale showcases such as the Pitch@Palace event last July, which was attended by the Duke of York.
The hub also hosts a Five to Nine Club for individuals who have an idea but are not yet able to give up the nine-to-five, and an Accelerator programme that fast-tracks potential high-growth businesses.
In its first eight months of supporting start-ups the Hub has;
· Over 70 full-time members.
· Supported more than 170 individuals and businesses.
· Guided 45 businesses through its 5-9 club.
· Fast-tracked 7 businesses through its Accelerator programme.
· Run 24 workshops with 156 businesses and individuals attending.
· Held 48 surgeries with more than 6 commercial partners including Natwest and the Development Bank of Wales.
· Welcomed more than 570 people through its 7 showcase events.
Community manager at the Hub, Carl Turner said that he was proud with what the team had accomplished so far: “In what feels more like eight-weeks than eight-months the Hub has made a good start establishing itself within the business community in Wrexham and surrounding areas.
“We’ve made some incredible connections and have forged strong relationships with local stakeholders such as Glyndwr University, the Department for Work and Pension, Ty Pâwb, UnDegUn, and the Centre of Excellence in Mobile and Emerging Technologies.
“We’ve also always endeavoured to support local businesses, which is why all our events have been catered by local companies including Plât Bach, Bank St Coffee, La Baguette and the Custodial Pie Corporation.
“This is just the beginning for the Hub, and we’ve still got a lot of work to do. But with the connections and partnerships we’ve already made, and the businesses that have already begun to flourish, we’re confident our team can continue to make a difference in Wrexham. We’re excited for the future of the Hub and look forward to meeting and founding more start-ups into the new year and beyond.”
One of the businesses based at the Hub is adventure skin-care for families company, Toddle. Its founder, Hannah Saunders, said: “The Hub is a great place to meet business associates and potential clients, and its relaxed but professional environment is the perfect mix for us. It’s also great to have other businesses based there to bounce ideas off, something you just don’t get at home or in a private office.
“After nine years in the armed forces, I left with a lot of confidence and transferable skills, but little in the way of experience or connections. The Hub and the Accelerator programme provided me with both those things in spades and everyone at Toddle is incredibly excited about the future.”
Dafydd Evans, regional manager for Business Wales said “We are very proud to be involved with the Wrexham Enterprise Hub. It is a run by an enthusiastic team who make every effort to facilitate and stimulate entrepreneurship with collaborative working. The Business Wales team uses the hub on a daily basis and it brings together stakeholders and clients in an inclusive environment. Having a comfortable environment that is non-threatening or intimidating provides the platform for individual representatives in our communities to develop and grow their ideas with the professional support and guidance that the hub provides.”
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