Are you a business owner in Stroud, Gloucestershire, struggling to navigate the startup process? Look no further, as this article provides a comprehensive guide to help you succeed in your next venture. From networking opportunities to funding options. Stroud is a market town with a population of approximately 32,000 people. It has a vibrant and diverse business community, with a range of industries such as retail, hospitality, and manufacturing. The following article contains 16 Stroud Startup Business Support options that will hopefully help empower you:
Stroud & District Chamber of Trade & Commerce
Stroud & District Chamber of Trade & Commerce is a group of individuals and companies trading in Stroud town centre and its surrounding district, consisting of retail and commercial entities ranging from sole traders to limited companies.
The chamber operates entirely through the efforts of unpaid volunteers, namely members who are passionate about Stroud and willing to commit their time to represent and run the chamber.
Stroud & District Chamber of Trade & Commerce: www.stroudchamber.org.uk
Better Business for All
The Better Business for All initiative is dedicated to helping startups get established and supporting existing businesses in their growth. Stroud District Council has partnered with the Growth Hub at the University of Gloucestershire to provide practical advice and regulatory support for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
So, what are Growth Hubs? They are a centralised source of information, business funding, advice, and guidance for businesses. The Growth Hubs network is a partnership between local public and private sectors, led by Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs). This allows them to connect national and local business support seamlessly for easy access by businesses.
Growth Hub: www.thegrowthhub.biz
Local Enterprise Partnerships: www.lepnetwork.net
Stroud District Council Regulatory Support Services
If you’re planning to start or expand your business, Stroud District Council provides regulatory support services to help you comply with legal requirements. Their expert team covers a range of topics including food safety and hygiene, health and safety at work, event management, environmental protection, pest control, licensing, and staff training.
The services are available at a cost price and are suitable for all types of businesses – from pre-startups to established businesses. We can also help you identify other services that you can obtain from different agencies.
Stroud District Council Regulatory Support Services: www.stroud.gov.uk/business/support-for-business/regulatory-support
Stroud Finance for Business
Stroud based entrepreneurs and business owners seeking funding can obtain details about available financing options from multiple sources:
GOV.UK Business Finance Search Facility
If you’re looking for funding for your business, there are several sources you can access for information on available finance. GOV.UK business finance search facility provides a comprehensive list of funding options.
GOV.UK Business Finance Search Facility: www.gov.uk/business-finance-support-finder
The Alternative Business Funding website
SMEs can find the most suitable funding through the Alternative Business Funding website, which brings together alternative finance providers.
The Alternative Business Funding website: www.alternativebusinessfunding.co.uk
The British Bankers Association
The British Bankers Association supports banks in providing advice and support related to finance via its website.
The British Bankers Association: www.british-business-bank.co.uk/finance-options/
Funding Central is a free website designed for charities, voluntary organisations, and social enterprises to provide access to thousands of funding and finance opportunities
Funding Central: www.myfundingcentral.co.uk
Funding Opportunities Bulletin
Gloucestershire VCS Alliance produces the Funding Opportunities Bulletin, which contains information on key funding opportunities.
Funding Opportunities Bulletin: www.glosvcsalliance.org.uk/external-funding-opportunities-bulletin
Stroud Business Support Organisations
Organisations that provide advice, information and support in the Stroud District.
Business is Great
Access all the UK government’s support services on the website. Business is Great offers information, advice, and guidance on finance, innovation, and exporting for small and large businesses. You can find templates and tools on the website to help them write business plans, hire employees, and market their products.
Business is Great: www.greatbusiness.gov.uk
Start and Grow Enterprise
Start and Grow Enterprise is a valuable programme that provides support to freelancers, entrepreneurs, and new businesses in Gloucestershire. The programme offers free training, networking, courses, coaching, and resources, as well as the opportunity to apply for grant funding. Whether you’re just starting out or you’re an established early-stage firm, Start and Grow Enterprise can help you grow your business. This University of Gloucestershire programme is based at The Growth Hub in Gloucester and is part-funded by ERDF. It is available to anyone in Stroud with a business idea.
Start and Grow Enterprise: www.startandgrowenterprise.uk
Fastershire is a partnership between Gloucestershire County Council and Herefordshire Council that was established to bring faster broadband to the two counties. The project aims to provide superfast broadband to all residents and businesses in the area by the end of 2019/20. The Fastershire website provides information on the various programmes and allows visitors to search by premise to find out what the plans are for particular areas. For businesses in Stroud, the Marches & Gloucestershire Business Broadband Grant is now available. The grant can provide up to £25K per business to deliver high-speed connectivity.
The Fredericks Foundation provides loans and business support for those who have failed to secure funding from mainstream lenders. Whether you require money to start-up, capital to expand your business, or funds to bridge a gap, Fredericks Foundation can help. Loans can range from £2,500 to £35,000. For more information on how Fredericks Foundation has supported businesses in the past, visit their website.
Fredericks Foundation: www.fredericksfoundation.org
The organisation offers mentoring, business advice sessions, and business start-up programmes. Individuals and businesses in Stroud District can currently access subsidised GEL support through Stroud District Council funding.
Gloucestershire Enterprise: www.glosenterprise.co.uk
Federation of Small Businesses (FSB)
The UK’s largest campaigning pressure group for small business owners and self-employed people. Providing legal advice, insurance, and financial assistance to its 215,000 members.
Federation of Small Businesses (FSB): www.fsb.org.uk
Department for International Trade (DIT)
The Department for International Trade helps businesses export and grow into global markets. The department also helps overseas companies locate and grow in the UK. The DIT provides a range of services, including market research, trade missions, and advice on exporting regulations. For businesses in Stroud looking to expand into international markets, the DIT is an essential resource.
Department for International Trade (DIT): www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-international-trade
Open to Export
Open to Export is a not-for-profit social enterprise backed by the government and businesses that helps UK businesses get ready to sell overseas.
Open to Export: www.opentoexport.com
It takes diligent work, dedication, and support to run a successful business in Stroud. So it’s fortunate that Stroud offers so many opportunities for entrepreneurs. Above you can find everything from networking groups to funding options. You can achieve your business goals with the right support and guidance. Contact me if I missed a relevant service.
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