Prisk unveils new growth package for local enterprise partnerships

Scheme aims to stimulate local economic growth

Business and enterprise minister Mark Prisk has unveiled a £5m Startup-Fund as part of a three-pronged programme to get Britain’s local economic partnerships (LEPs) up and running.

Launched earlier today, the fund will be provided on a one-off basis, and is intended to fund office equipment and training. LEPs have been invited to submit bids for a share of the money.

The second of the three measures will give the LEPs  access to an online Toolbox, which provides comprehensive information on economic development activity across government departments, and ideas for strong partnership and government working.

Finally, the LEPswill be able to access information through the new Department for Business Innovation & Skills (BIS) Local Network Scheme, which will provide an initial point of contact on any issues.

Funding allocations from the first round of the local enterprise partnership Capacity Fund were also issued to the LEPs today. Each will receive a share of the £1m fund, in the hope that it increases their understanding of the barriers to growth facing local businesses.

Speaking during the launch of the new Start-up Fund,Prisk said that “today we are moving up a gear in promoting local growth”.

The minister added: “Over the last 10 months, business and civic leaders have risen to the (LEP) challenge and we now have 33 partnerships in place covering 92% of all businesses in England.

“The package of support opportunities I’ve announced today will help partnerships to translate their ideas and ambition into real action to help businesses in their areas and to unlock growth.”



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