Five local companies; Progression Solicitors, Windermere Works, Flock, Kitty In Pink and The Quirky Coach (aka The Quirky Traveller) have shown their support for young local businesses by giving their services free of charge in a competition which is proving popular amongst start-ups in south Cumbria. Their combined contributions have created a practical support package worth nearly £5000.
Progression Solicitors who are giving a commercial legal package up to the value of £1000, have four offices across the South Lakes and employ over twenty staff. Progression Solicitors quickly established itself and has been successfully helping clients for over eleven years. MD Anthony Smith explains why they wanted to get involved with the concept
“Helping start-ups is one of our favourite areas of work. In the excitement of starting a new venture many businesses overlook the benefits of properly drawn up contracts, terms and conditions, partnership deeds or shareholders agreements.We’re often called in once things have turned sour. So much heartache and expense can be prevented if clear contracts are produced at the outset. Part of what we’re trying to achieve by being involved with this scheme is the protection of new businesses and to highlight the value of proper legal support in the early days and throughout the life of a business. We’re really looking forward to working with the lucky winner”
Zoe Dawes who has been a Leadership Coach for nearly twenty years has worked with some of the region’s business forerunners. She is also recognisable as travel blogger The Quirky Traveller with a twitter following of over 18,000 Zoe’s insight has been much sought after in recent times. In September she was a speaker at Taste Lancashire and has been chosen to be a judge on Lancashire Tourism Awards and Cumbria Family Business Awards. Zoe has given coaching support for the lucky winner and comments here on her involvement with the scheme.
“Creating space and time to look at your business from the outside and work through problems can feel like a privilege. It’s something established businesses tend to take advantage of more than start-ups but having seen the dramatic effect coaching can have on young businesses I was keen to be involved. Successful business leaders are those who set out with clear goals and take time to look at their business objectively, I’m delighted to be able to help a bright new business do the same.”
Kitty in Pink was founded by Sophie Bennett four years ago. With a strong design and SEO team Kitty in Pink have worked on design projects for local events such as Another Fine Fest, Choose Ulverston and Bici Cafe. They have pledged both design help and a three page website. Sophie believes in the power of good design and talks about their decision to support young business.
“A well designed website is about so much more than just looking good, it’s vital that SEO is built into the very fabric of it. We’re excited to be helping a young business make their ideas become a visual reality, but more importantly helping them create a website that helps their business grow. It’s particularly exciting to help businesses at the beginning of their journey when ideas and passion for success are so strong.”
Windermere Works who have given two months free hotdesking space to the winner of the competition are themselves at the beginning of their own business journey. An established business centre for nearly thirty years the family owned business took the bold move to renovate the whole ground floor to provide up to the minute working space for entrepreneurs and business owners. Bill Smith who has been project managing the renovations adds his thoughts to the collaborative idea.
“We felt there was a vibrant entrepreneurial movement in South Lakes and wanted to create a space befitting of the creativity that so clearly abounds in the area. Working with other positive and progressive businesses on this competition is truly exciting and we’re all looking forward to creating a long and supportive relationship with the lucky winner.”
Flock the PR, Social Media and Events company based in the South Lakes have bolstered the support package further by giving two months social and PR guidance. With a raft of successful clients and events under their belt the unconventional PR company is led by entrepreneurs Sophia Newton and Janett Walker. Janett explained their reasons for getting involved.
“We’ve been lucky enough to clear many of the start-up struggles and felt it would be the right thing to help someone else on their way. Raising the profile of your business in the early days is so important and there are some inventive and cost effective ways of doing so that we’re eager to share with the winning business.”
Those looking to enter the competition can do so by providing just a few simple details here. The business must be less than three years old to qualify. The winner will be chosen on 6th October.