Barclays launches package of business support to help small businesses across the UK
- Package of business support programmes to support rebuilding the local economy
- Business owners will be offered skills to protect their bottom line along with tools to source funding for growth
- Further programmes for businesses and jobseekers in four pilot areas to be announced throughout the year
- Support comes as Barclays announces Great Yarmouth as the fourth and final pilot area in the Rebuilding Thriving Local Economies initiative
- The Back to Business Programme, created in partnership with Cambridge Judge Business School, is a free, bespoke online toolkit for businesses with over 15 hours’ worth of content, developed especially for small-to-medium sized enterprises. Participants will be able to learn how to assess the health of a business, how to manage cash flow, and how to create a resilience plan for their firm.
- For business owners looking to grow or finance new business lines, the Funding Readiness programme is designed to explain the funding options available to entrepreneurs and provide the skills and knowledge needed to fund business growth.
The Barclays Rebuilding Thriving Local Economies initiative focuses on understanding needs and opportunities on the ground in pilot sites in different parts of the country: Bury (a metropolitan borough), Kilmarnock (a smaller UK town), Taunton Deane (a rural community) and Great Yarmouth (a coastal town). The Barclays support for business initiatives will be available for up to 1,000 individual businesses across each programme, with firms in RTLE pilot areas encouraged to sign up first.
Hannah Bernard, Head of Business Banking at Barclays, said: “Now more than ever, it’s imperative that we support business growth across the country. We’ve seen the impact of the pandemic on small and medium-sized businesses and now is the time to provide important skills, mentoring and funding advice so that we can support local economies to recover and thrive.”
The business programmes are the first in a series of packages of support to be announced throughout the year in the pilot areas, which will further aid local businesses, provide access to skills and training and boost the aspiration and confidence of young people in the local community.
Businesses wishing to access the Back to Business or Funding Readiness programmes should visit: https://www.barclays.co.uk/business-banking/sectors/entrepreneurs/back-to-business-programme/ and labs.barclays/capital-enterprise and https://www.barclays.co.uk/business-banking/sectors/entrepreneurs/back-to-business-programme/.
Notes to Editors
Places on both the Back to Business and Funding Readiness programmes are limited and will be allocated on a first come first served basis.
About Barclays’ Rebuilding Thriving Local Economies
1. Rebuilding Thriving Local Economies focuses on understanding needs and opportunities on the ground in pilot sites in four different parts of the country, representing four different types of place (a metropolitan borough - Bury, a rural community – Taunton Deane, a coastal area – Great Yarmouth, and a smaller town - Kilmarnock). Each pilot lasts for three years. Their launches are staggered, meaning that the initiative overall is a five-year commitment.
2. The initiative focuses on four key areas:
- Understanding the Local Economy
- Skills and Training
- Aspiration and Confidence
- Growing Businesses
3. In each pilot Barclays undertakes analysis of the local economy. This, in turn, provides insight into skills and training needs, driving aspiration and confidence, with the aim of helping businesses to grow. We will engage local decision-makers, schools and colleges, businesses and business groups to get their views. Working with these partners will inform specific actions which Barclays will commit to take under each of the four areas above.
4. Barclays will measure the impact of what we do, and share the results publicly at regular intervals. We will be transparent around where our actions have had success and, equally, where our intervention may not have had the impact we had hoped. We can learn as much from what fails as what works.
5. Barclays will share our learnings locally and with national decision-makers to help inform the debate about how we deliver the best economic model for our country and build a national framework of action.