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Business boost for aspiring dragons

By gail robinson, Town Reporter Wednesday 27th February 2013

Business is set for a boost in Barnsley thanks to a new programme of start up support designed to ensure the town’s aspiring entrepreneurs get off to a flying start.


Delivered by the Barnsley Business and Innovation Centre (BBIC), the SmartStart and GENESIS programmes offer free business mentoring and support to pre-start up and early stage businesses.


Those joining get an initial session with a specialist start up coach, access to free workshops covering skills such as marketing and finance and a final one to one session to draw up a next step action plan.


One business which is already benefitting is Independent Support Solutions Limited, a start-up company which will manage the affairs of vulnerable people and support them with their day to day needs such as paying bills and arranging care.


The company also supplies housing to vulnerable people and can take control of complicated administrative tasks, including payroll services for paying carers.


Company directors Keri Ramsden and Wes Ogden are four weeks’ into the SmartStart programme after being one of the first to sign up.


"As I’m new to running a business, I needed a little reassurance that I was on the right track and doing the right things,” said Keri.


“SmartStart has proved perfect for that and really boosted my confidence. I’d recommend it to anyone thinking about setting up on their own for the first time, whatever their level of business knowledge.”


James Herbert, SmartStart programme manager, said: “More people are considering setting up their own business.


"At BBIC, we want to make sure those people receive the support they need to be successful.”


“Our programmes are designed to complement the existing support on offer through Enterprising Barnsley and help bring additional prosperity and jobs to the borough.


"We’re looking forward to meeting lots more budding businesses at our open day in March and helping them to realise their ambitions.”


Anyone thinking of setting up their own business, or who has recently started one, is invited to the Open Day at BBIC, Wilthorpe Road, Barnsley, on March 12 from 10am to 4pm.

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