New public and private-backed growth programme launches

Designed by entrepreneurs, the Government, universities and UK leading corporates, Growth Builder is now open for applications

Growth building: The programme has both public and private backing

Growth building: The programme has both public and private backing

Growth Builder, the business growth programme designed by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs, launches today and is open for applications from British high-growth businesses.

Entrepreneurs and public and private sector organisations have come together to build the tailored 12-month programme, designed to provide unrivalled access to government, university innovation, corporate expertise, investors, and successful entrepreneurs.

Designed by NatWest, BT, UCL, Loughborough University, UKTI, the UK Business Angels Association, PIE Mapping and Fast Growth Forum, the Growth Builder programme is the first of its type to bring together public and private partners to offer a fully adaptive educational programme for British businesses that want to take on the next stage of growth.

Applications open today with a launch event at BT Tower. The first programme, will kick-off in late April 2016 with monthly events, workshops, and coaching groups. Organisers will identify an initial cohort of up to 50 high-growth UK companies and will work with them over a 12-month period.

Companies selected for the programme will be chosen by a panel of industry experts, each according to their own merit. The panel will be looking for proven successes with the potential for significant future growth. As a guideline companies should have either £1.5m revenue or 20 staff and have grown by over 20% per year for the last two years.

Ed Wray, co-founder of Betfair and active angel investor, said: "British start-ups are doing a great job, but more can be done to help them scale to become global and industry-leading success stories.

Growth Builder has been designed to tackle some of the current barriers to this. Bringing together leading players in public and private sector organisations within a collaborative peer group, the focus is on providing promising entrepreneurs with unrivalled access to the most useful names in business, angel and venture funds, global universities, Government and entrepreneurship."

Sherry Coutu CBE, serial entrepreneur and investor, commented: "The UK is leading the world in the creation of innovative and fast-growth start-up companies - we have much to be proud of.

"With this in mind, I applaud the efforts of Growth Builder, which is building on the work we did together last year with RBS on the Scale-up Report, working to increase the number of businesses that grow from small ones to large ones by bringing together entrepreneurs with the specific goal of accessing new and game-changing contacts. I look forward to seeing the impact this programme will have on productivity and UK economic growth for years to come.”