Business leaders at the
Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber are celebrating after being awarded
the franchise to help small businesses in the area.
They bid for the right to
provide the new Small Business Service initiated by the government.
In March The Chamber, along
with it partners presented its successful bid to a regional assessment
panel in Birmingham.
Ministers want the SBS, which
has a national budget of £100 million a year, to improve the quality
and delivery of support programmes for small businesses.
The award will allow the
Chamber to continue a wide range of services helping small firms in
the area under the Business Link banner.
If the SBS franchise had not
been won, these services could have been under threat.
The services will also be
integrated with those aimed at small business from British Trade
International and the local Learning and Skills Council, which will be
Chamber chief executive
Malcolm Gillespie said:
“We are obviously
delighted. It is excellent news for businesses, in addition to
ourselves, and our partners throughout Coventry and Warwickshire.”
Director of membership
services Alan Durham added:
“Our aim is to help create
more successful international businesses. In particular, we will be
placing more emphasis on helping smaller companies to develop their
capacity and ability to tackle overseas market.”
Government departments have
been told to “think small first” when formulating policy, and to
make sure that regulations are written in plain English.
SBS services will start next April. Anyone interested inthem
should call 024 7665 4321.