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Businesses to get a boost through University of Chichester's £11M project
13th November 2019

Businesses in the south of England could be boosted by a new £11 million project from the University of Chichester Business School which will drive economic growth in the region.

The Business Hot House Programme, is offering to support more than 1,000 firms – large and small – and 500 start-up entrepreneurs to improve productivity and innovation.

The multimillion-pound grant was awarded by the European Regional Development Fund to develop businesses in the Coast to Capital Local Economic Partnership area, which covers West Sussex and parts of East Sussex and East Surrey.

The project, which is open for applications, provides opportunities for established small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to strengthen their business practices and make them more profitable – but will also look to help start-ups develop new and existing ideas.

It will specifically focus on improving business leaders’ knowledge to increase productivity and innovation, which are areas highlighted by Coast to Capital as barriers to growth.

Support will be delivered through workshops, bootcamps, peer-to-peer groups, and business mentoring sessions led by academics and experts from the University of Chichester, among others.

Funding for the Hot House programme comes from a £5.5million grant from European Regional Development Fund, which will be match-funded by SMEs in the Coast to Capital LEP.

A further £800,000 has been pledged by the project’s strategic partners: the Princes Trust, West Sussex County Council, Brighton and Hove City Council, and the Greater Brighton Economic Board.

Other benefactors comprise Mole Valley District Council, Lewes District Council, as well district and borough councils Adur and Worthing, Arun, Chichester, Crawley, Horsham, and Mid Sussex.

Approval for the grant money was given by the Ministry of Housing, Communities, and Local Government (MHCLG), the accountable body with the UK government, to support the growth objectives of the region.

Businesses interested in the Hot House programme should register their interest at www.chi.ac.uk/hothouse or by emailing manager Gareth Sear at g.sear@chi.ac.uk.

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