£5.5million Business Growth Programme Launched To Support Tees Valley Businesses And Entrepreneurs

Business & Invest | Published on: 18th March 2024

Tees Valley companies are to benefit from innovative pilot programmes, including £2.3million of direct grant funding, through a scheme designed to strengthen and support local business start-up and scale-up. 

The five schemes include: 

  • An intensive accelerator support programme for entrepreneurs, delivered through six-month incubation or 12-week scale-up programmes. 
  • A mentoring and coaching programme offering focused support from subject matter experts to drive business growth. 
  •  An innovation programme connecting SMEs to large organisations through innovation challenges, supporting smaller firms to develop new products and access new markets. 
  •  A further Net Zero initiative to help firms develop the certification required to access Tees Valley Tier 1 and 2 supply chain opportunities. 
  •  Targeted support is also available for entrepreneurs encountering multiple socio-economic barriers to self-employment and business growth funding. 

 A significant proportion of the funding will go directly to businesses, with up to £2.3million grant funding available to support those with the drive and ambition to grow. 

Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “It’s vital that all our amazing businesses can benefit from support to help them grow and deliver high quality, well-paid jobs for our area.  

“We’ve already got some superb small businesses which we want to encourage to grow while also supporting entrepreneurs to set up new companies across a range of industries and sectors.”  

Siobhan McArdle, Chair of the Tees Valley Business Board, said: “It has been a primary focus of the Business Board to simplify and streamline support so firms can access the timely, high-quality and pragmatic support they need.  

“We also wanted to ensure a significant proportion of the funding available would go directly to SME businesses. This new programme has been driven by the feedback we received from Tees Valley businesses, and we will continue to work with the local business community to inform future programmes. 

“Following our supplier engagement event, we had 67 suppliers apply to deliver this programme, with 19 businesses shortlisted and asked to pitch. During this process we also saw some really creative and innovative bids and we plan to explore these further as we move towards the delivery of the additional business support programmes that will make up the Tees Valley Investment Zone programme.” 

The schemes, which are still subject to contract, are funded by the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF).   

The announcement comes following a raft of UKSPF-funded programme launches, including Tees Valley Digital Transformation, Tees Valley Net Zero, Tees Valley Securing Investment and Tees Valley Supply Chain. 

Successful bids are led by Decerna Ltd, Triage Centrum Ltd, Alt Labs Agency Ltd, Orangebox Training Solutions UK Ltd and Edge Innovation Ltd.  

To find out more about the programmes as they launch, visit www.teesvalley-ca.gov.uk/growth-support or register your interest by e-mailing [email protected].  

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