News and information for local businesses - 7 August 2020

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Plymouth business news

  7 August 2020

Please find below an overview of the latest business advice and guidance, including the latest COVID-19 news. In today's newsletter you will find news and updates on:

  • £10 million boost for Plymouth projects
  • Contracts made simpler to help Spend 4 Plymouth
  • Small business support schemes: Small Business Leadership Programme and Peer Networks
  • Quality assurance at heart of new £2 billion green homes grants
  • Start something - support for new enterprises
  • Clean Growth and Infrastructure - Annual Review 2020
  • iLEAD - Redefining creative leadership in Plymouth
  • Register your establishment for the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme
  • Funding streams and competitions
  • Virtual events and webinars

If you have any specific concerns or are in need of support, please contact us.

£10 million boost for Plymouth projects

We’ve got some pretty strong signals that up to £10 million is on the way to help exciting Plymouth construction projects off the ground.

The Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership has been allocated over £35 million from the Government’s Getting Building Fund to spend on projects ready to go and £10 million of that is within sight for key Plymouth projects. The projects chosen will support employment, regeneration, skills and innovation and play an important part of the city’s economic recovery programme, Resurgam.

Find out more here

Contracts made simpler to help Spend 4 Plymouth

Plymouth City Council has refreshed its contract standing orders - its procurement bible - to make it simpler for local businesses to bid for contracts.

The Council recently launched its ‘Spend 4 Plymouth’ initiative to keep the pound in Plymouth as much as possible and to make sure the authority’s spending benefits Plymouth, its people as well as its environment.

This is part of the Council’s Resurgam COVID-19 economic recovery plan to reduce the impact of the pandemic and to deliver a more equal, sustainable and prosperous city. The programme looks at what the Council can do to protect jobs and help the city’s residents and it has already set a target of increasing by 10 per cent any spend on Plymouth goods, services or works over the next two years.

Find out more here

Small business support schemes: Small Business Leadership Programme and Peer Networks

The Small Business Leadership Programme and Peer Network scheme aim to enhance resilience and recovery from the impact of COVID-19, and enable SMEs to develop their potential for future growth and productivity.

Small Business Leadership Programme

The Small Business Leadership Programme is a fully-funded programme delivered by a consortium of leading university business schools. You will develop strategic leadership skills, and the confidence to make informed decisions that boost business performance. The curriculum explores leadership, innovation, employee engagement, operational efficiency, marketing, sustainable practices, and finance.

Peer Networks

Peer Networks brings together diverse cohorts of business leaders so you can discuss your business challenges with your peers. Delivered through a series of high impact group sessions, you will gain and reflect on valuable feedback from your peers and identify practical solutions to overcome them. From finance and HR to sales and marketing, our expert facilitators will give you the flexibility to create a trusted support network, helping to build and strengthen your business and improve its overall performance.

Find out more here

Start Something – support for brilliant new enterprises

From October and for the next year, Real Ideas Organisaiotnare offering 10 FREE membership packages worth over £3,000 each to entrepreneurial people with ideas that we think could become brilliant businesses.

To find out more about our Start Something programme, sign up to their webinar on Wednesday 19 August, 1pm to 2pm, to find out more about this great opportunity and ask any questions you have.

Quality assurance at heart of new £2 billion green homes grants

Builders, plumbers, and other tradespeople across England will need a government-backed seal of approval to provide their services as part of the new £2 billion Green Homes Grant going live at the end of September.

The new scheme will see the government fund up to two-thirds of the cost of home improvements of over 600,000 homes, supporting over 100,000 jobs in green construction.

Tradespeople must register for TrustMark or Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) accreditation to take part in the scheme, which will cover green home improvements ranging from insulation of walls, floors and roofs, to the installation of low-carbon heating, like heat pumps or solar thermal – measures that could help families save up to £600 a year on their energy bills.

Find out more here

Clean Growth and Infrastructure - Annual Review 2020

The scale of the global decarbonisation challenge is immense but fundamental to our futures. It requires all sectors to adopt carbon abatement and sequestration technologies, improve energy efficiency, and adopt climate mitigation and resilience measures, in addition to wider behavioural change to control demand.

The solutions required to meet this challenge are new and innovative, multidisciplinary and interdependent. We work with policymakers, industry and the research base to understand and establish future needs, and run innovation programmes to deliver against these needs.

The document below provides details of this approach, highlights the impact this can have on individual companies, and outlines some of the government's plans.

View the document here

iLEAD - Redefining creative leadership in Plymouth

iMayflower is an ambitious programme bringing together Plymouth’s creative talent and excellent digital resources, with the city’s existing strengths in sectors such as healthcare, marine, manufacturing and cultural tourism. Central to this is iLEADa new development programme for leaders in Plymouth.

iLEAD is looking for a small group of passionate and committed people who are ready, willing and able to catalyse Plymouth’s leadership, extend its influence and make change happen. The cohort will work together, learn from each other, challenge perceived norms, think differently, consider the possible and create a new model for inclusive leadership that will help shape a vibrant future.

Places on iLEAD are limited to a maximum of 16 and we are expecting high levels of interest in this unique opportunity. The programme is a free programme but for iLEAD to be successful, we do need every member of the cohort to be ready to commit dedicated time and energy to it.    

If your ambition matches ours and you want to be part of iLEAD and help shape a better future for Plymouth, then download the pack and find out what you need to do to secure your place.

Find out more here

Register your establishment for the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme

You can use the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme to offer a discount to diners and encourage them to eat at your restaurant.

You can use the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme:

  • all day, every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 3 to 31 August 2020

  • to offer a 50% discount on food or non-alcoholic drinks to eat or drink in (up to a maximum of £10 discount per diner)

  • to claim the money back from the government

There is no limit to the number of times customers can use the offer during the period of the scheme. Your customers cannot get a discount for someone who is not eating or drinking.

Alcohol and service charges are excluded from the offer.

Registration will close on 31 August 2020.

Find out more here 

Funding streams and competitions

New Funding for Employers to Hire Apprentices

Apprenticeships are jobs with training that benefit people of all ages and backgrounds. Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, employers may be facing recruitment challenges. In response, the Government has introduced new payments for businesses taking on apprentices.

Through the scheme, employers in England are being encouraged to take advantage of cash incentives designed to create more high quality apprenticeship opportunities so more people, particularly young people, can kick-start a rewarding career.

From 1 September 2020, employers can apply through their apprenticeship service account.

Find out more here


£50m to Boost UK Customs Intermediaries

The Government recognises the challenges facing customs intermediaries in supporting existing and new clients following the UK's departure from the EU. In response, the Customs Grants Scheme has been created to help businesses build capacity and improve efficiency in completing customs declarations.

Customs intermediaries from across the UK can now apply for a share of £50 million of new funding to increase their capacity to make declarations ahead of 2021.

The scheme closes for applications on 30 June 2021 or earlier if funding is fully allocated.

Find out more here


BT Supports SMEs to Grow Following COVID-19

The BT Small Business Support Scheme is designed to help SMEs across the UK that have been affected by the coronavirus pandemic. It is intended to enable firms to build their recovery and growth following COVID-19 and features a series of measures aimed at boosting connectivity, cash flow and confidence.

Find out more here

Virtual events and webinars

For further information on the latest virtual events, or to upload and promote yours, visit Invest Plymouth's event page.

You can also submit your own virtual events


Green Forward Networking 

Green Forward Networking | Thursday 13 August 2020, 8.30am to 10am

Free networking event for businesses who want to become more socially and environmentally friendly.

Find out more here


Meet the Expert FREE Business Support Interactive Workshops - How to improve your business processes

Oceansgate 'Meet the Expert'  | Thursday 20 & 27 August, 10am to 11.30am

You are invited to join two FREE interactive workshops all about how you can improve your business processes.

The workshops will be delivered by Craig Willis, Founder and CEO of Skore , who will offer practical advice and tools to help you streamline your business. As we're facing the impact of COVID 19, there couldn't be a better time to understand more about process mapping and how it's a vital tool that can help your business bounce back and thrive.

The interactive workshop will be delivered over two sessions.

Find out more here


Outset Enterprise Coaching

Multiple events 

Outset Enterprise Coaching delivers a full support programme combining modular business workshops, rich online learning resources and 1:1 support. It’s open to all Plymouth residents, and fully funded by Plymouth City Council and the European Regional Development Fund.

Find out more here


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