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Businesses discuss themes at heard of business success

Peter Thompson, managing director of Milton Keynes-based security specialist CanTrack Global and Verity Williams, early careers manager at Travis Perkins plc’s headquarters in Northampton, were joined by software firm The Prosperous Shop’s founder Karen Adams and David Foster of Halo Coffee at the conference, staged at the Hilton Milton Keynes hotel.

Focusing on three core business themes – Scaling-up, Developing Skills and Finance –  the Show Me Success event also heard from Malcolm Johnston, interim manager for Velocity Growth Hub about the forthcoming scale-up support from the Growth Hub.

He said: “This event demonstrates we have an incredibly vibrant SME community right across the South East Midlands. The three key messages that came across from all the speakers were about harnessing the power of networking, to face change head-on and, to take the support and advice available so you are not doing it alone.”

A total 18 organisations exhibited at the event, attended by more than 100 people. This included services and business support projects to assist business growth, ranging from marketing solutions, HR advice, employee skills and apprenticeships, finance and accelerator and incubator programmes.

Speaking alongside SEMLEP’s skills and employment manager Paul Thompson, Verity took questions from the audience about how they have realised the value of apprenticeships in their business through a high-quality apprenticeship programme and how this can benefit SMEs.

The five-strong finance panel provided advice and information about the wide-range of finance available as well as the support provided to help businesses access funding options, including grants available.

Speakers also included Stephen Page, from Start-up Funding Club, Andrew Moon from Bizfly and Lewis Stringer, from British Business Bank.

Jonathan Lawson, of Goldman Sachs, talked through the 10,000 Small Business Programme.

SEMLEP chief executive Stephen Catchpole said: “Show me Success was all about bringing local businesses together to inspire others to realise their business potential and get the business support they need to grow and thrive.

“It showcased the impact that the right business advice and support can have in helping people to grow their business idea, through start-up to global success.”