Getting a Boost

Thousands of businesses have accessed support from Boost, Lancashire’s Business Growth Hub, a recent report has revealed.

Boost helps business owners and leaders across the county to find the right support for their business.

It also delivers several funded programmes for start-up, established and fast-growing businesses.

During the Covid-19 lockdown, Boost also reconfigured its support to help businesses to deal with the effects of the pandemic.

From January 2019 to the end of June 2020, more than 2,770 businesses accessed Boost’s services and support for the first time. They were a diverse group and not just repeat users.

Boost helped to support an increase in employment numbers in 567 supported enterprises.

Significant support of 12 hours or more was given to more than 500 businesses. More than 700 enterprises received information, diagnostic and brokerage support.

There were 1,225 referrals to wider business support agencies, reflecting Boost’s central role as a Growth Hub.

And it’s not just about existing business. Boost helped 176 potential entrepreneurs to be enterprise ready, and 127 new enterprises were supported.

The #AskForHelp campaign, which Boost launched on day one of the Covid lockdown attracted more than 5,000 businesses in the county.

The aim of the campaign was to help businesses to manage the effects of the Covid pandemic on areas of business including finances, cash flow, staff, remote working, supply chain issues and diversifying into new markets.

Around 320 businesses also benefitted from last year’s Peer Networks programme, which brought together groups of 8-11 business leaders to discuss common challenges, share opportunities and create powerful long-term networks in a structured way.

And more than 100 businesses have already registered for Peer Networks this year, which is again led by Boost.

Peer Networks, which is being funded by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) is available to businesses more than a year old, with five or more employees, a turnover of more than £100,000 and a passion to grow.

Boost is working with 18 private sector organisations to facilitate the cohort groups. They will cover a wide range of different topics and issues.

The facilitating organisations will also provide specific one-to-one mentoring or coaching to help each participant develop and grow their business.

For more information on Boost and its support programmes, visit www.boostbusinesslancashire.co.uk