The extent of support provided by Business Wales has been detailed as the organisation marks ten years since it was established.
Part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government, Business Wales is a bilingual business support service for Welsh micro-businesses and SMEs including social enterprises, and aspiring entrepreneurs.
In its decade of operation, Business Wales has supported more than 390,000 entrepreneurs and businesses, assisted the creation of in excess of 19,000 new start-ups and directly helped to create nearly 47,000 jobs in the Welsh economy.
Economy minister Vaughan Gething said: “In the ten years since its inception, Business Wales has established itself as a strong, visible and accessible brand that offers valuable support to its entrepreneurs and business across Wales, and helps them to build the knowledge, expertise and contacts to drive and grow their businesses.”
He added: “As it celebrates its tenth birthday, the service really has established itself as a vital and valued part of the business landscape in Wales.
“That is why we are absolutely committed to continuing this service and have committed an additional £10m per year for the next two years at least, following the end of EU funding.”
Gething visited Frog Bikes in Pontypool which was also founded in 2013 with support from Business Wales. The company has a specific aim of designing and building quality, light weight and affordable kids bikes.
Jerry Lawson, at Frog Bikes, said: “Since we first considered opening our factory in Wales, we have really appreciated the support we’ve had from Business Wales. This has included helping us find the right premises, support with recruitment and staff training, helping us access new export markets and funding for innovation and manufacturing efficiencies.”
Robert Lloyd Griffiths, director Wales, ICAEW, and chair of the Business Wales Task and Finish group, said before Business Wales’ arrival on the scene, “business support was perceived to be fragmented, complicated to access and varied in its implementation and success rates”.
Lloyd Griffiths added that Business Wales had performed “an incredible job, particularly during the pandemic”.
Ben Cottam, head of FSB Wales, said: “As we look to recover the economy in the short-term and further over the coming years, we very much look forward to working with Business Wales and Welsh Government to ensure that the ambitions of Welsh entrepreneurs to start businesses, grow them and employ those around them are supported and we congratulate the service on ten years of delivery.”
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