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Solent LEP steps up SME support

27 February 2015

Businesses across the Solent are set to benefit from a wealth of support to help them grow. The Solent LEP (Local Enterprise Partnership) will put its weight and financial backing behind a Solent Business Support Hub, a ‘one stop shop' that helps businesses with free help, expert advice and signposting to funding opportunities.

The service will be funded by Solent LEP for a year, after which, EU funding will be put in place to ensure Business Support is available in the Solent for the longer-term.

Jan Ward, Solent LEP Director and CEO of Southampton-based Corrotherm, said:

"The Solent is a great place to do business and there are a wide range of business support organisations out there, providing real help for SMEs. However, with such an abundance of support and funding on offer, it can be difficult for SMEs to know where to start in order to get access to the right information. The Solent Business Support Hub will provide a route through to the right advise and support and build on existing work to ensure that businesses can navigate their way to the right information to help them grow."

The Solent Business Support Hub will provide information on everything from funding and finance to skills and employability through an online portal. Users will be able to download free resources and guides as well as search for funding opportunities they may be eligible for.

In addition to the website, the hub will run a telephone helpline where experts are on hand to offer free help and advice.

Solent LEP is looking to appoint a business or organisation to oversee the programme, including the provision of advisors, the website and telephone service. Any organisations interested in running the Solent Business Support Hub should apply through the Portsmouth City Council website by Friday 27th March 2015.





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