Superfast Boost for Leeds City Region Small Businesses

Small and medium sized businesses in the Leeds City Region will benefit from further digital skills support as an additional £100,000 is secured by the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP).

Superfast broadband projects across the Leeds City Region are already exceeding targets and supporting businesses to get online and learn new skills. Due to high levels of demand for this skills support, the LEP has successfully bid for further funding to enable more small businesses in the City Region realise the benefits of being online.

Roger Marsh, Chair of the LEP said:

"We recognise that digital skills are critical to the success of many businesses and there is a clear demand in the Leeds City Region for this type of skills support.

"This additional funding will enable us to pursue our ambition of delivering a smarter digital City Region, supporting business to exploit the benefit from the ongoing digital revolution and explore new opportunities both at home and in overseas markets."

The new funding will be immediately available for businesses to access and will be invested in the current programmes running across the City Region including Superfast West Yorkshire, Superfast North Yorkshire and the Superconnected Cities programmes in Leeds, Bradford and York.

The funding will enable a further 200 SMEs to benefit from face to face master class sessions delivered by the Superfast West Yorkshire programme which teaches businesses the benefits of getting on line. 60 businesses that have already benefitted from these sessions will also now be eligible to access further support to help them continue their e-learning development.

Roger Marsh added:

"A recent SQW Broadband Impact Study found that for every £1 of public investment in broadband, £20 was generated in GVA, so this additional investment in the LEP’s businesses support offer has a real opportunity to impact on the regional and national economy as well as give vital support to small businesses."

April Atkinson from Headway Recruitment in Leeds has already benefitted from the Superfast West Yorkshire business programme and commented:

"Being able to access free business support from experts in the field of social marketing and the online world has really helped me look at and evaluate what I have been doing with my business.

"The masterclasses and one on one advice we have received has been invaluable and I would encourage anyone who is interested in delivering more of their business through the internet to look into the free support and advice - it has really opened my eyes to what is possible"

For more information about how this funding can support your business, visit: http://www.superfastwestyorkshire.co.uk/business/