Entrepreneurial Spark to launch three new UK business accelerators

Natwest-backed "hatcheries" will aim to generate positive social change in Bristol, Leeds and Brighton

Business accelerator Entrepreneurial Spark has teamed up with NatWest to open three new free business accelerators in Bristol, Leeds and Brighton, after launching its first in Birmingham last month.

The programme is now open for applications to join the ‘Hatcheries’, which will open this August and aims to help fledgling firms  and start-ups generate positive social change through entrepreneurship.

Each Hatchery will support 80 entrepreneurs in a six-month enablement programme,where they will have free access to superfast broadband, office space and telephones.

Entrepreneurial Spark is hoping to nurture a ‘golden age’ for entrepreneurs, by backing hundreds of innovative and creative start-ups across every sector. Founded in 2012, the accelerator now has seven hubs across the UK, and has announced plans for a further four, after securing financial support from NatWest and RBS.

Entrepreneurial Spark CEO, Jim Duffy, said: “Just as we tell our start-ups, we are not stopping here or resting on our laurels. We will continue our national expansion to allow new businesses the length and breadth of Britain to benefit from the unique benefits Entrepreneurial Spark offers.

“We focus on the person, not just the business, and ensure their behaviours are complementary to achieving success, and we do this all for free. That is our secret sauce which has seen us support over 350 businesses with a turnover of £41m in 2014. Blending that secret sauce and the imagination, creativity and determination shown by start-ups across Britain is an irresistible combination.”

Gordon Merrylees, head of entrepreneurship at NatWest, added: “Our commitment to start-up businesses is highlighted in our multi-million pound investment and continued support of Entrepreneurial Spark. Jim and his team are inspirational and the highly successful work they carry out in Scotland will be replicated across the UK.”

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