Hotline set up for businesses

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A BUSINESS support helpline has been launched as part of Scarborough’s new Yorkshire Coast Business Gateway programme.

The programme is a £2.1 million initiative to improve economic performance within Scarborough by increasing the number of business start-ups, improve business survival rates and create jobs.

One of the Business Gateway’s early projects is a new hotline targeted both at people who are considering starting a new business and existing companies.

Services and support are available which cover a range of issues including sales and marketing, finance, training, premises, business planning, social enterprise, as well as relative legislation and regulations.

David Kelly, economic development manager at Scarborough Council, which is one of the Gateway partners, said: “We are really pleased with the success of the project so far, and want more people to benefit from the services of Yorkshire Coast Business Gateway by using the new helpline.

“It is vital for local economic development that we increase the numbers of new business start-up, and help those existing companies that have the potential to grow or who are struggling in these difficult economic times.”

The Yorkshire Coast Business Gateway is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund and is being delivered by a partnership which includes Scarborough Council, Yorkshire Coast College, Leeds, York and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce and Seachange.

The programme is already proving to be a success. Up to the end of March it has engaged more than 350 people interested in starting a new business, resulting in 30 new businesses being created. The project has also helped 28 existing business across the borough, with a range of issues including marketing, workforce development and access to finance.

The new helpline, available on freephone 0800 083 0402, will be open five days a week, between 9.15am and 5pm but requests for support can also be emailed to business.support@scarborough.gov.uk.