The organisation established to help drive economic growth through boosting businesses throughout Coventry and Warwickshire has helped create over 2,000 jobs in the last 12 months.
The Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP) Growth Hub was established in 2014 and is designed to help businesses with ambitions to grow whatever their sector by offering a one-stop shop of advice and guidance.
In its latest figures for 2018/19, the CWLEP Growth Hub, which is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), Coventry City Council and Warwickshire County Council, has now engaged with, and is continuing to support, over 4,000 businesses.
That involved helping 494 companies with their growth plans compared to 437 the previous year and creating 2,031 jobs compared to 1,800 the previous year.
The statistics equate to £79.5 million GVA in 2018/19 compared to £57.49 million in 2017/18 which highlights the economic boost to the area.
Craig Humphrey, managing director of the CWLEP Growth Hub, said the 4,000 businesses which had been helped were split between 40 per cent being based in Coventry and 60 per cent in Warwickshire.
He said: “It has been another busy year and I am pleased with the impact we continue to make across Coventry and Warwickshire.
“Our philosophy has been to engage with high-growth companies which can have the greatest impact across the region and that is proving to make a difference.
“We are here to help businesses whether they are an SME or have multiple offices, and we have a support team that takes the initial enquiries to ensure they are pointed in the right direction.
“If they feel a business has the potential for high growth, they are passed on to an account manager so that we are deploying our resources as efficiently as we can.
“Smaller businesses which can benefit from grants or mentoring from various programmes run by Coventry City Council and Warwickshire County Council are linked up with the officers dealing with those projects so there is a real joined-up approach to business support throughout the area.
“There are other areas in the country that are not as joined up as Coventry and Warwickshire but there is still room for improvement.
“We are not resting on our laurels because we want to make sure we are laying the right foundations for economic growth.”
Craig spoke about the financial figures at the CWLEP’s SME Supergroup Business Group meeting which is chaired by Sean Farnell.
Sean said the figures highlighted the difference the CWLEP Growth Hub was making in the area in terms of creating jobs and economic growth.
“Coventry and Warwickshire is very much an area that has momentum,” he said. “The staff working at the Growth Hub understand the difficulties businesses are facing particularly with all the uncertainty surrounding Brexit but they have the experience to signpost business owners in the right direction.
“Putting together a plan of action to help businesses head in the right direction towards growth is vital whether that is through finding the right location to expand, advising on training courses to upskill staff or providing help to overcome any difficulties which are acting as a barrier to growth.”