Growth Hub in Cirencester will unlock local business potential

The Royal Agricultural University (RAU) and GFirst LEP, Gloucestershire’s Local Enterprise Partnership, are pleased to announce the opening of a new Growth Hub at the RAU’s campus in Cirencester, which will strengthen the Gloucestershire business community by providing innovative business support.

The Growth Hub will help to grow the Gloucestershire economy by assisting local businesses of all sizes and from all sectors to accelerate their growth and exploit their full potential. The Growth Hub will also build on the RAU’s existing areas of expertise by supporting businesses working in agri-technology or based in rural environments across the county.

Promoting entrepreneurship and innovation in the area, the Growth Hub will provide personalised support to businesses of all types in the region, from pre-start through to existing companies and organisations looking to grow.  It will deliver business development, business support networks, strategy and advisory services, business information and enterprise support.

The Growth Hub will form part of an expanding network of Growth Hubs in strategic locations across the county of Gloucestershire. Created by GFirst LEP, this network will enable enhanced business support services to be delivered at a range of venues to ensure that physical location is not a barrier for businesses to get the support they need.

The plans for the Growth Hub in Cirencester have been supported by a wide-ranging group of partners including; Cotswold District Council, Cirencester Town Council, Cirencester Chamber of Commerce, Cirencester Community Development Trust and Cirencester College. It is anticipated that the new Growth Hub, which has received £1.25m funding from GFirst LEP as part of the Gloucestershire Growth Deal, will be ready to support local businesses by April 2018.

Local businesses and interested members of the public are invited to an exhibition to view the plans for this exciting community development. The drop-in event will take place on Wednesday 8th February from 2pm to 8pm at the Boutflour Hall at the Royal Agricultural University and all are welcome.

Professor Joanna Price, Vice-Chancellor of the Royal Agricultural University said: “The Growth Hub will be an invaluable facility for Cirencester and the wider Gloucestershire community. The county has a diverse business community many of whom operate in rural areas and is home to a number of world-leading companies; the new Growth Hub will further strengthen and grow the Gloucestershire business economy. Entrepreneurship and innovation are central to the University’s academic mission and we are excited to be working with GFirst LEP and growing our relationships with our partners, including the University of Gloucestershire, which has already developed a successful Growth Hub.”

Sarah Danson, Growth Hub Project Manager at GFirst LEP said: “I’m really excited to have our next partners on board for the Growth Hub Network – the Royal Agricultural University has submitted an excellent proposal and we look forward to working with them to develop the new Growth Hub and drive business growth in Gloucestershire.”