Craig Humphrey 1

A leading business organisation has launched a new website as part of a free nationwide programme to help SMES in Coventry and Warwickshire overcome the Coronavirus pandemic and achieve future success.

The Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP) Growth Hub has created a microsite on www.finditincw.co.uk for business leaders and entrepreneurs who are taking part in the Peer Networks initiative.

The nationwide project has been launched by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) for Growth Hubs to run in their areas.

SMEs will be split into advanced manufacturing and engineering, digital/IT/new technology, professional services, retail, creative industries, hospitality, tourism and leisure, the High Street, construction and retail estate, transport and logistics, third sector, renewable energy and green business, and events and conferencing.

The CWLEP Growth Hub has appointed seven Coventry and Warwickshire businesses to deliver each cohort who will meet for a total of 18 hours through two-hour online sessions every fortnight to help business leaders grow and develop their businesses. There will also be individual one-to-one support provided as part of Peer Networks.

The microsite has been developed to enable delegates from their own group and the wider programme to inter-act and share information with each other through the Peer Network Forum.

The Forum will be the place for members to share their experience of the programme and to continue talking to cohort colleagues, facilitators, business advisors and industry experts. It is open to all businesses involved with the Peer Networks programme to help them network with other participants, share knowledge and work through ideas and challenges with the wider Peer Networks community.

Craig Humphrey, managing director of the CWLEP Growth Hub, said the pilot programme was proving popular in Coventry and Warwickshire.

“We have already had 68 SMEs sign up to Peer Networks which is a fantastic response and this is a great way through interactive learning to work through common business issues in a variety of sectors with people in a similar situation,” he said.

“We want to continue to help businesses get back on their feet and not only survive but grow to re-build their own companies and the wider economy.

“Peer Networks is a great opportunity to gain valuable feedback on areas which are affecting your business and how to overcome them as well as networking with SMEs throughout Coventry and Warwickshire.

“Whether it is HR, finance, marketing or sales, the experts running each cohort along with the other delegates will give valuable feedback to help SMEs overcome the difficult and unprecedented challenges which business owners are facing.

“This free course is also an opportunity to build trusted networks and provide support not only during the course but after it has finished which will prove invaluable to long-term success.”

Burgis & Bullock, the Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce, Edale, FSB West Midlands, HR Dept, ibd Business Advice Group and Wright Hassall are running the cohorts.

Peer Networks is open to any SME that has operated for at least one year, has at least five employees, a turnover of at least £100,000 and an aspiration to improve and the course needs to be completed before March 31, 2021.

For further information or to sign-up, please email peernetworks@cwgrowthhub.co.uk

Kate Buckle
Article by Kate Buckle
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