2014 – the year to get down to business!

By Anita Jaynes on 27 December, 2013

2014 could be the best year ever to launch or grow a small business in Wiltshire and rural Swindon.

A combination of free expert advice, grants and affordable workspace available through The Enterprise Network initiative www.enterprisewiltshire.co.uk/projects/The-Enterprise-Network-TEN, led by Wiltshire Council, means there’s never been a better time to get those entrepreneurial juices flowing!

Thanks to £5.2m Government and EU funding, the start of 2014 will see the opening of two more Enterprise Centres in Wiltshire – in Wootton Bassett and Salisbury – to join those in Trowbridge and Ludgershall which launched recently.

All the Enterprise Centres offer new, flexible and purpose-built office space and hot desk facilities designed specifically with micro businesses in mind and at affordable, all-inclusive rents.

Hot desks can be hired by the half day, and offices for between one and five people by the month, with easy-in, easy-out contracts. High speed broadband, communal networking areas and bookable meeting rooms complete the package.

In addition, The Enterprise Network offers free expert business advice through the Wiltshire Business Support Service and access to grants – available to any start-up or step-up business in Wiltshire and rural Swindon, as well as for all Enterprise Centre tenants.

Meeting and conference facilities at all the Enterprise Centres are also available for external hire.

Since TEN launched, 22 people have been helped to start a new business, 61 existing businesses have received expert support and advice, 36 women-led enterprises have had support and more than 40 new jobs have been created across Wiltshire.

Kate Forrest, manager of The Enterprise Network, said: “We believe there’s never been a better time for Wiltshire people to start a new business, or grow an existing enterprise thanks to this brilliant combination of practical support, workspace and grants.

“We’re particularly keen to support military leavers and their dependents in Wiltshire to take their first steps to becoming their own bosses. There is help and support every step of the way for anyone keen to do business, from the first light-bulb idea.”

Fleur de Rhé-Philipe, Wiltshire Council cabinet member for economy, skills and transport said:  “One of our top priorities is to boost the local economy and these new centres will provide fantastic support for emerging and existing businesses in Wiltshire. Ensuring local businesses are given the opportunity to thrive is integral to boosting the local economy.  We will continue to work with our partners on innovative projects like these so businesses have the support and resources they need to be successful.”

To find out more about workspace at TEN’s four Enterprise Centres across Wiltshire, free business advice or grants, or hire of meeting rooms, call 01264 848311 or visit www.enterprisewiltshire.co.uk/projects/The-Enterprise-Network-TEN