Newsletter 41

Having trouble viewing this email? View it as a Web page.

city of wolverhampton council

Relight Business Support

Decarbonisation Programme - Net Zero Grants

energy assessment

The City Council will be launching the second round of the SME and NET ZERO grant programmes later next month. Details of the grants will be posted on the Council website with a maximum 50% grant support, and a maximum total grant value.

It's important to note that the NET ZERO grant will require an Energy Assessment to be carried out. As these Assessments need to be carried out before a grant Expression of Interest can be completed then if you were considering investing in energy efficiency measures it would be prudent to apply for an assessment now. They are free and are undertaken by Pro Enviro – the link to register is here. We will be opening the next window for grant applications towards the end of March - the Expression of Interest form will be on the website at that time and any application needs to relate to recommendations in the Energy Assessment.


The King's Awards for Enterprise

King's Awards

On the 4th March we will hosting a breakfast briefing on The King’s Awards for Enterprise at the Ignite Hub (i10 Railway Drive, Interchange, Wolverhampton WV1 1LH) at 8.30am. The Award categories are for outstanding achievement by UK businesses in the categories of innovation, international trade, sustainable development, and promoting opportunity through social mobility

If you get an award you’ll be:

  • invited to a Royal reception
  • presented with the award at your company by one of The King’s representatives, a Lord-Lieutenant
  • able to fly The King’s Awards flag at your main office, and use the emblem on your marketing materials (for example, on your packaging, advertisements, stationery and website)
  • given a Grant of Appointment (an official certificate) and a commemorative crystal trophy

The awards are valid for 5 years, and organisations that got an award have reported benefiting from worldwide recognition, increased commercial value, greater press coverage, and a boost to staff morale.

To book a place please click here

And for further details of the Awards please see the following link.


Business Support Programmes

There are currently over 80 free or fully funded support programmes available to local businesses, from investment readiness to decarbonisation. Here is a snapshot of a handful of them – and if you are looking for support please call 01902 555572 or submit an enquiry at contact form at the foot of the Wolverhampton Employer Support page and one of the team will contact you.

We begin with some of the support available to start up companies. 

Start Up Business Wolverhampton - The Black Country Chamber of Commerce have launched a new programme providing services for new and growing businesses on behalf of City of Wolverhampton Council as part of the local authority’s drive to build the city economy. Under the Council’s ‘Our City Our Plan’ strategy, the Chamber of Commerce team will offer local firms in the early stages of development a suite of activity to help them start up, scale up and thrive. For more details please click here

StartUp UK - This is a pioneering scheme from Enterprise Nation. It is backed by the UK government and high-profile firms HSBC UK, Intuit QuickBooks and Curry's Business. The programme provides free tailored support and delivers initiatives such as e-learning, online training, national events and flagship annual conferences throughout the UK. Further details can be found here  

Barclays Eagle Labs - Eagle Labs provide a wealth of support to start-up businesses, particularly those who are focused on technology and innovation. For those needing physical space we provide coworking and offices throughout the UK. For more info click here 

The Princes Trust Enterprise Programme

The Enterprise Programme helps 18 to 30 year olds turn their big ideas into a business reality. With so much advice, guidance and support on offer for budding entrepreneurs, this in-person programme is broken down into four stages. For further information please click here 


This newsletter also highlights below some of the support available to manufacturing, high growth, exporting, and social enterprises.


Manufacturing Technology Centre

The Manufacturing Support Services (MSS) team was created to support the UK’s small and medium manufacturers to address and overcome their engineering challenges, to accelerate performance and improve efficiencies.

Drawing on the extensive resources and expertise at the MTC, its nationwide team of experts support UK manufacturing to embed innovation, accelerate industrial growth and change the way UK small and medium manufacturers compete. Recognising many businesses will benefit from further support to invest, it has access to Innovate UK REACH funding to de-risk the initial investment in their future. For further information please click here 

Made Smarter - Digital experts will provide advice to manufacturing and engineering businesses on how to switch to advanced and automated technologies as well as working to improve employees’ overall digital skills.

With up to 30 hours of prescriptive learning, you’ll be able to transform your business, enhance value creation, create efficiencies and engage your employees to deliver better results. With our Made Smarter leadership skills training, we’ll help you discover new and innovative ways of developing and managing your people.

Made Smarter Digital Adoption is open to small and medium sized manufacturing and engineering businesses which have manufacturing premises in the West Midlands.


high growth

High Growth Accelerator

 This Programme aims to provide intensive and in-depth support for 50 high-growth small and medium businesses in the West Midlands. 

The support will help these firms to manage their growth in a more sustainable way, ensuring that their growth continues higher, longer, and more sustainably than may have been without the support.

To register your interest for this programme, please complete the short enquiry form on the Wolverhampton Employer Support page and an adviser will be in touch 


UK Export Academy

Whether you’re new to exporting or looking to develop your knowledge even further, there is an event for you and your business. Customise your learning journey at a pace that suits you, all designed and delivered by specialist trade experts.

Essentials - for new exporters, learn the basics to get started, build your Export Action Plan.

Masterclasses - for more experienced exporters, build on your existing exporting skills, key topics delivered by industry experts.

Sector & Market - join a sector-specific event, find opportunities in global markets, get export updates from sector experts.

Eligibility:  Not suitable for start-up businesses, ideally for more established businesses with the processes in place to be able to export 

Find out more about the UK Export Academy here

Find out about other Government export support here


social enterprise

Social Economy Business Support Programme

This programme aims to help social economy organisations increase their trading income and impact. Participants must be based in the West Midlands with a turnover between £50k to £100k pa, and the business must be at least 2 years old.

Applications open from 29 January to 3 March 2024.

Part of HM Government’s and West Midlands Combined Authority’s Commonwealth Games Legacy Fund and WMCA Social Economy Support Group

Participants will receive a grant incentivised to increase trading income to a maximum of £5,000. A blend of in-person and virtual expert training and peer learning alongside monthly 1:1 mentoring to increase your trading income, business skills and beneficiaries. Running from April 2024 to September 2024. To apply you will need to complete a short Expression of Interest form

and if successful you will be invited to complete a full application.


WMCA Webinars

There are also 2 webinars being run with support from the West Midlands Combined Authority in the coming weeks.


Social Media Essentials – LinkedIn

15th February 1-2.30pm


Join colleagues for an insightful webinar on "Social Media Essentials: LinkedIn" tailored exclusively for businesses in the West Midlands region.

Social Media Essentials are a series of webinars focused on each of the major platforms, going through the essential information that you need to know about a platform one at a time.

This time the focus is LinkedIn. Claiming itself as ‘the professional network’ it’s popular with businesses to connect with others and promote their organisations. What is the best strategy to use? In this session, they will cover the basic principles to set you running and look at the best ways to build loyalty.

To book a place please click here



social shopping

Kerching! – Sell More with Social Shopping

14th March  10 – 11.30am


Calling all businesses in the West Midlands. Join colleagues for an exclusive session on boosting sales through Instagram, Facebook, TikTok and more younger audiences live their lives through social media. That includes shopping: browsing for things to buy, seeing a celebrity use a product, sharing with their friends, buying through the platform.

If you’re a business in the West Midlands who sells physical products to a consumer market, embracing social shopping will open up a new channel of sales for your business. In this session, they will cover the principles and the core information about how to set this up on your social media accounts.

To book a place please click here


HMRC - Support for the self-employed

hm rev

Paying the National Minimum Wage (NMW) correctly and protecting your workers’ rights is a vital part of employing seasonal workers. HMRC, Gangmaster and Labour Abuse Authority (GLAA) and Employment Agency Standards (EAS) Inspectorate all work to support employers in avoiding those mistakes and get things right first time.      HMRC’s NMW team are offering a live webinar where they will be joined by colleagues from GLAA and EAS – talking through common issues found in respect of seasonal work, and how employers can protect their workers’ rights. There will also be a panel of experts on hand from all 3 organisations to answer questions on the topic. 

Protecting the rights of seasonal workers – a joint HMRC NMW, EAS and GLAA webinar This webinar will feature content from:

GLAA discussing the seasonal worker visa route and support available.

EAS covering the key obligations of agencies and employment businesses in the provision of seasonal workers.

HMRC's NMW team looking at how the provision of accommodation impacts minimum wage.

Click here to register


HMRC now have customer forum - with all the help, support and guidance you need. You can ask questions, see what others are asking and get the answers and top tips on a range of topics including VAT, self-employment, Self Assessment or being an employer. Click here to join