New scheme helps budding entrepreneurs with start up costs

The University of Wolverhampton has teamed up with Virgin StartUp as a delivery partner, to help local people put their business ideas into practice in the Black Country – encouraging entrepreneurship and promoting economic growth in the region.

The government funded scheme offers budding entrepreneurs fixed rate start-up loans and, as part of the Virgin StartUp package, provides a unique nationwide offering of mentoring, finance, practical advice and support.

Tony Collins, Non-Executive Director at Virgin StartUp, said:  “Launching your own business is one of the most fulfilling and rewarding things you can do. Virgin StartUp gives budding entrepreneurs the funding, information, strong mentorship and support they need. Each applicant is assessed and supported throughout the various stages of the loan process. We’re delighted to be working with the University of Wolverhampton to help local entrepreneurs get their business ideas off the ground, not only financially but by providing an invaluable network of advice and support.”

Rose Judeh-Elwell, Regional Project Development Officer at the University, said: “Enterprise Staff based at the University of Wolverhampton Science Park already offer a wide range of consultancy services and development advice, help and support for current students, graduates, alumni and staff to start up and run their own business. The service has now been extended through our new partnership with Virgin StartUp offering people the chance to apply for a loan to finance their business with the University supporting them through the application process. The scheme covers all business sectors including retail.”Tom Bailey successfully starts a business with a Virgin StartUp loan.

The University of Wolverhampton’s SPEED Plus project has already locally supported the creation of 240 businesses, with 136 of those having already exceeded the crucial 12 month trading point.

‌Tom Bailey, who recently set up his own training business, Succeed Through Speaking, said: “Starting a business has always been an aspiration of mine. With the support and financial backing from Virgin StartUp this dream has now became a reality. The relationship I have with Virgin Startup has allowed me to work closely with expert mentors to develop a business plan, create business goals and achieve them.”

‌Anyone wanting more information about Virgin StartUp loans should contact Rose Judeh-Elwell at the University of Wolverhampton by email r.judehelwell@wlv.ac.uk

ENDS

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