Are you missing funding and business advice opportunities…?

Are you missing funding and business advice opportunities…?

 

As the number of SME’s in the UK soars towards the 5 million mark a recent survey undertaken by Axa Insurance reveals that many of these businesses are unaware of support available to help them grow. It is a well-known fact that businesses that seek external advice perform better than businesses that don’t seek advice. […]

As the number of SME’s in the UK soars towards the 5 million mark a recent survey undertaken by Axa Insurance reveals that many of these businesses are unaware of support available to help them grow.

It is a well-known fact that businesses that seek external advice perform better than businesses that don’t seek advice. One of the key areas of support most currently overlooked was shown to be access to finance with less than 6% of those surveyed taking advantage of government schemes including Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) or Seed Investment Schemes (SEIS).

Seeking professional advice including business strategy appears to be another area of under activity, in a further survey undertaken by Axa, 40% of firms were found to be lacking a continuity plan and more crucially 80% were found to have an over reliance on a small number of directors who are responsible for winning sales and overseeing operat ions known as ‘key-man risk’, which if overlooked could have a significant affect on micro SME’s.

This survey chimes with my findings as a business adviser, as most days I find myself sign-posting businesses towards funding and business support schemes, I therefore thought it might be helpful to compile a list of some of the services available to SME’s in the Cambridge area:

 

Growth Accelerator

http://www.growthaccelerator.com Growth Accelerator is a service led by some of the country’s most successful growth specialists helping business owners identify their strategy for growth by finding new connections, examining their existing offering and investigating new routes to investment. Growth Accelerator will get to the heart of the barriers that are holding your business bank and help identify the critical step you need to take to reach the next phase of growth rapidly and sustainably.

 

Ready, Set, Go Innovation advice and grant programme

www.nwes.org.uk/advice-and-training/how-to-access-finance/ready-set-go

This part funded European Regional Development Fund programme provides in depth business advice to both start-up and established businesses. Focussed on assisting businesses to introduce a new product, process or idea, the project provides support across a wide range of business areas and includes a grant fund of 20% of eligible costs up to £25,000 to help with innovation.

 

Manufacturing Advisory Service (MAS)

www.mymas.org The Manufacturing Advisory Service (MAS) provides manufacturing advice to SME’s in the East of England. The assistance starts with a free business review and the development of an action plan tailored to the business needs. Advisors can bring in specialists to work with companies on more in-depth projects; Grants matched at up to 50% could also be available.

 

Connecting Cambridgeshire, Destination Digital  

www.destinationdigital.info Connecting Cambridgeshire is creating a new super fast broadband infrastructure to help businesses be better connected.   The scheme offers a blend of free business advice and vouchers (up to £3000) to help pay for improved connection and up to 40% support (£10,000 spend) on buying products and services to assist with digital enablement.

 

Do you have any suggestions of other schemes which might be of value? Has your business benefitted from external advice? Please feel free to add your comments by writing a blog and sending it to coaching@stjohns.co.uk.

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