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Eleven business leaders representing six SMEs attended the first ‘onboarding’ session of the #GrowMySME ScaleUp Business Development Programme on Wednesday, January 29. Focusing on ‘Developing a Visionary Strategy’, the session saw businesses from the Pharmaceutical, Manufacturing, Digital Technology, Telecommunications, Engineering, and Fabrication sectors develop their three-year ‘orbit’ diagrams, which will help them to articulate what their plans are, and how they are going to implement them, in order to create a game-changing strategy to scale-up their business.

Karen Eddy, Director of Scunthorpe-based construction company SC4 (UK) Ltd said: “The on boarding session was great; it was really beneficial to dedicate the time to working on our business, and to write down our business plans in the session.”

The six businesses on cohort 1 will now meet up regularly over the next three months to accelerate their scale-up plans, by learning in masterclasses how to overcome barriers to rapid growth, taking inspiration from veteran scale-up entrepreneurs in “WOW” leadership events, bouncing ideas off dedicated scale-up coaches in 1-2-1 mentoring sessions, and by working together as a cohort to share wisdom, experiences and problem solving approaches in peer-to-peer board networking sessions.

Emma Waudby, Sales & Marketing Manager of Hull-based telecoms company Cobus Ltd said: “I really enjoyed the first session. It’s been beneficial to take the time away from the office to look at our growth plans and to start to formulate a plan. I’m looking forward to working & developing it more and seeing the results.”

As defined by the UK ScaleUp Institute, a business qualifies as a scale-up when it has achieved, or has a genuine ambition to achieve, 20% annual growth in turnover, employees, or both. The #GrowMySME ScaleUp Programme is therefore looking to work with businesses of this nature to give them the boost that they need to guarantee sustained scale-up success, which will have a powerful impact on the Humber region economy; research from the ScaleUp Institute shows that whilst only 0.6% of SMEs nationally qualify as scale-ups, they contribute nearly 70% of all SME turnover.

The #GrowMySME ScaleUp Programme will help catalyse the plans of scale up businesses by helping them develop an effective leadership team, by introducing innovative new products and services that build on their existing markets, by helping them to understand and access the best financial options for growth, and by helping them to access new regional, national and international markets.

Jon Brunton, Growth Hub Manager said: “The Humber region has some fantastic small and medium sized businesses that produce brilliant products and services, and we know that there are many businesses in our region that are either already scale ups by definition that just need extra support to continue their rapid growth; or indeed businesses that are on the verge of scaling up but need that ‘hand holding’ to make it happen.

“It’s pleasing to see how well received the onboarding session was for our first cohort, and I can’t wait to see what the impact of the programme will be on our cohort one businesses. Recruitment for cohort two is underway as we speak, and I understand that we’ve got some really ambitious and exciting businesses lined-up to join the programme – so I would really encourage any business owner or leader who is considering joining the scale up programme to get on board; as it will really pay dividends for their business.”

The ScaleUp Business Development Programme is an exciting and exclusive new business support product in the Humber region. Aimed at businesses with ambitions to grow at pace, with a product or service that can scale rapidly into new markets, and with at least 10 full time equivalent employees the ScaleUp Programme is fully-funded and therefore completely free of charge to access.

For more information, see the ScaleUp Business Development Programme webpage here: