Wednesday, 02 September 2015

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University of Cumbria's new business initiative

BUSINESSES in Cumbria can develop and progress with the launch of a new and easily accessible growth voucher scheme offered by the University of Cumbria.

Businesses can obtain up to £3,000 worth of funding to help them access advice and expertise from the university.

The scheme was developed by the university’s Enterprise Team to support businesses involved with renewable energy or sustainable engineering.

The University of Cumbria is one of the sponsors behind our campaign to help grow fledgling businesses. The other is accountants Armstrong Watson.

The two organisations are sponsoring the Local Business Accelerators (LBA) scheme, which offers £15m of free advertising and mentoring to promising young enterprises across the UK.

Dr Michele Lawty-Jones, speaking about the voucher scheme, said: “The University of Cumbria has a diverse range of expert knowledge and we want to share this with local businesses to help support their growth and development in these difficult economic times.”

The growth vouchers can be exchanged for expert knowledge in a range of subject disciplines including engineering, e-commerce, IT, marketing, digital media and environmental performance analysis.

Steve Wrigley, sustainable engineering project manager for Britain’s Energy Coast Campus, said: “We are currently working on a project with Future Power Systems Ltd who build and supply waterwheel products.

“We are helping them to identify ways of maximising the production efficiency of their waterwheel product by running a series of tests which will ultimately lead to recommendations relating to the size and the shape of buckets.”

The growth vouchers offer a way for businesses involved in the supply of energy related products to access fully funded expert advice. They can also be combined with other business support programmes managed by the university such as UNITE, a scheme which provides a fully funded graduate placement of up to 20 days.

Now in its second year, the LBA initiative involves more than 500 newspapers and is spearheaded by the Newspaper Society and fronted by Dragons’ Den star Deborah Meaden.

n For more information on the voucher scheme contact 01524 384626 or

n To enter the LBA scheme go to



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