THE Gazette has launched a boost to business by giving three local firms the chance to win expert mentoring and free advertising.
We are searching for the most promising fledgling businesses across the Fylde coast and will help accelerate three firms’ success with a share of £15m free advertising, and vital expertise from a bank of business mentors.
The competition is open to all businesses that are active in the local community, between one and three years old, looking to create jobs and full of potential – businesses with a great idea, product, or even a new market.
The bold initiative, part of the Local Business Accelerators Campaign, backed by Dragons’ Den judge, Deborah Meaden, is being spearheaded by the Newspaper Society.
Nearly 500 local press publications are joining forces to promote the strength and value of local newspapers for local businesses and communities.
Together, the local press industry will search for the nation’s most promising young businesses and help them accelerate their success with top professional advice plus a substantial allocation of free advertising space in their local publication.
The Gazette’s mentors are Merlin boss Ian Hawkins, Blackpool Business Leadership group boss Howard Lewis, and the Chamber of Commerce’s Hugh Evans.
One business, picked from the hundreds of regional winners, will get individual mentoring from national ambassador Deborah Meaden, who will become a consultant and mentor to the business for a year.
Deborah said: “I’ve seen the unique contribution local press makes to the success of local businesses time and again with my own ventures.
“In this age of enterprise it has never been more important to drive awareness about the value of local marketing for a fledgling business, which is why I’m so proud to support Local Business Accelerators and help build industrious communities.”
The details for entry can be found at www.accelerateme.co.uk and entries must be made before November 14.
Prime Minister David Cameron has given his full backing to the Local Business Accelerators campaign launched by The Gazette, describing it as an “excellent initiative” aimed at giving practical support to small businesses across the UK.
He said: “In towns and cities across the country, local and regional newspapers are helping to build stronger local communities and contributing to growth by supporting local businesses.
“They have a major role to play in championing growth.
“Those that will benefit from the initiative are the very businesses and entrepreneurs that will help to lead Britain’s recovery.
Mr Cameron added: “I want to thank all those involved for taking part in Local Business Accelerators and to wish you every success with this important campaign.”