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Business support programmes launched in East Sussex

Two schemes providing support and training to local businesses have been launched for East Sussex.

The Ready to Grow and Big Ambitions programmes have received £447,464 from the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund. They are open to companies based in Lewes, Eastbourne, Rother and Wealden districts.

Ready To Grow is a training programme for early-stage business owners who have been trading for less than three years. It includes in-person and online workshops, masterclasses, one-to-one support and networking opportunities.

Big Ambitions provides up to 18 hours of expertise for businesses that are growing and likely to employ additional staff within the next six to 12 months and includes one-to-one diagnostic action planning and specialist support.

Ready To Grow and Big Ambitions will run until March 2025.

Provision of the programmes, which are a collaborative project between Lewes District, Eastbourne Borough, Rother District and Wealden District Councils, is being managed by East Sussex County Council on behalf of the local authorities.

Both programmes are being delivered by Digital Islands, a specialist provider of business support services.

Councillor Colin Swansborough, Cabinet Member for Enterprise at Eastbourne Borough Council, said: “I know how important it is that new businesses have access to high-quality advice and guidance. I’m delighted that this latest initiative provides free support, especially at a time when conditions for businesses are so challenging. I hope as many entrepreneurs as possible will grab this opportunity and get their business careers off on the right foot.”

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