Help is at hand for young businesses
11:35am Wednesday 10th October 2012 in News
AS the local newspaper industry launches its highly acclaimed Local Business Accelerators campaign led by Deborah Meaden, of Dragon’s Den, new research shows that Britain’s young businesses are positive about prospects for growth despite tough economic times, but they still need advice and support.
The campaign, supported by the government and private sector’s Business in You campaign and backed by Prime Minister David Cameron, as well as the Governor of the Bank of England Mervyn King, launches today. More than 500 newspapers across the UK are joining forces to deliver a £15m boost to promising young businesses through free advertising and mentoring.
Businesses aged between one and five years old can enter LBA for the chance to win a free ad campaign in their local paper plus mentoring support from local business leaders.
The most promising businesses will go forward to the national stage of the competition to win a year’s mentoring from Deborah Meaden and a local advertising campaign devised by a top London creative ad agency.
The Free Press, along with its sister title The South Wales Argus, is taking part in the scheme again this year and has enlisted the help of local businessmen Dylan Matthews, of the Celtic Manor Resort, and Matt Southall, of Newportbased recruitment company Acorn as mentors. They will join South Wales Argus editor Kevin Ward and the paper’s business editor Jo Barnes in judging the local entries to the campaign.
LBA national ambassador Deborah Meaden said: “With last year’s LBA having demonstrated the unique power of local and regional press to provide a meaningful boost to promising young businesses, I am delighted to be supporting the initiative once again.
“The campaign provided tangible examples of the real contribution that local newspapers can provide to young businesses across many different sectors, accelerating their development.
“Enterprise and entrepreneurism in the local community is more important than ever before and I look forward to finding another young business to mentor and drive forward.”
Last year’s overall LBA winner, Ilkley Brewery in Yorkshire, which is currently receiving mentoring support from Deborah, saw its orders in Leeds double as a result of the free LBA ad campaign in its local paper and the business expanded to take on two new employees since taking part in the initiative.