Growth suppport helps tech firm make the right connections

7 June 2018

A digital platform that connects high street retailers with local consumers is booting up for success after receiving expert business advice from Boost’s Growth Support scheme.

The tailored programme helped David Preston, founder of Blackpool-based OFFIGO, to structure his business idea and gain tangible market focus to take the enterprise forward.

Working with a Boost adviser, David carried out a thorough research programme with consumers and businesses to understand how his platform could be developed to meet their needs.

OFFIGO is an online service that allows businesses to create a free profile on his site and post their offers and events each day.

It means consumers and businesses can connect through a single platform promoting local offers and events on the high street, without having to trawl through search engines looking at numerous individual sites.

Working with Enterprise4All business advisor Yusuf Musa, David completed a detailed diagnostic analysis of his experience and business idea. Despite David’s experience working in advertising and hospitality, he needed specialist support to deliver a strong business model and create the OFFIGO platform.

David also attended the Boost Lean Launchpad series and completed a Business Model Canvas, and a Visioning Orbit, which helped give the business focus and direction.

Boost is Lancashire’s Business Growth Hub and is led by the Lancashire LEP (Local Enterprise Partnership) and Lancashire County Council and supported by funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

David commented: “OFFIGO isn’t just another ‘buy local’ campaign. It’s about Blackpool being stronger together and changing the way businesses connect with residents and visitors.

“The support from Yusuf and Boost has allowed me to give the business a real structure and a focus on how we are going to move forward. I’ve been able to carry out thorough research with consumers and local businesses to find out how we can develop OFFIGO, so users get the most out of our service.”

Yusuf Musa said: “David has a strong business idea and is a great example of the type of entrepreneur we want support. It was important for him to take a step back from working in the business and devote some time to work on the business. The mentoring has allowed him to set targets and plan how he will achieve them. it’s been a pleasure to work alongside David.”

He continues to be supported through the Boost Growth Support Programme, by attending workshops to assist the growth of the business.

Boost Business Lancashire (Boost) is the name for the Lancashire Business Growth Hub. It is led by the Lancashire LEP (Local Enterprise Partnership) and Lancashire County Council and supported by funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

The role of Boost is to help growth-hungry Lancashire businesses realise their potential by providing simple access to a range of leading-edge funded programmes, delivered by specialists with a track record of growing established and innovative start-up businesses. Boost also helps businesses access specialist private sector business support, as well as other nationally funded programmes, where relevant.

Between July 2013 and July 2015, Boost provided growth advice and support to over 2,800 local businesses across Lancashire, with many benefiting from tailored programmes of consultancy, grants or mentoring to support their growth. Boost has so far helped to create over 1,200 jobs and new economic activity valued in excess of £10m.

In November 2015, Boost secured £7.8m of new funding to run for a further three years from January 2016.

Boost Business Lancashire has received £3.8m of funding from the England European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020. The Department for Communities and Local Government is the Managing Authority for ERDF. Established by the European Union ERDF funds help local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations.  For more information click here

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