Lancashire firms planning for job creation
Almost nine out of 10 Lancashire businesses (86%) are planning to create new jobs in 2015 compared to 68% who had the same intention last year, according to a survey conducted by Boost Business Lancashire.
The Lancashire Growth Forecast 2015 has found that half of businesses (50%) are also planning significant investment in developing a product or service this year, up from 26% in 2014.
More than half (55%) of businesses surveyed said they were forecasting a turnover increase of greater than 20% in 2015. That compares with 24% of businesses who were forecasting the same level of growth in the 2014 survey.
Boost is the £7.2m Lancashire Business Growth Hub delivered by Lancashire County Council and the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership.
Andy Walker, head of business growth innovation at Lancashire County Council, said: “As the economy continues to bounce back, it’s great to hear that more Lancashire businesses are achieving growth and have strong intentions to recruit new staff.
“We’ve worked incredibly hard in recent years to ensure that our business support offer is focused on the needs of those growing businesses that will create jobs in the region, so we’re very encouraged by the 70% of people who responded and said they're likely to access public sector business support in 2015.
“The funding for Boost Business Lancashire is due to run out in the summer, so I would urge any growing business thinking about applying for support from Boost to do it as soon as possible.”
The Lancashire Growth Forecast 2015 also revealed that the three biggest barriers to growth for Lancashire businesses in 2015 are raising finance (50%), a shortage of skills in the workforce (42%) and compliance with legislation (27%).
People responding to the survey said the three biggest opportunities to achieve growth in 2015 are improving sales and marketing (75%), developing new products (48%) and attracting and retaining talented staff (39%).
Boost Business Lancashire is the £7.2m Lancashire Business Growth Hub, offering free and part-funded business support to ambitious and growing businesses. Delivered by Lancashire County Council and the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership, and supported by £3.6m from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), it aims to grow Lancashire’s economy by £20m and create at least 1,200 new jobs and safeguard 700 more by summer 2015.
Businesses wanting to apply for support through Boost can fill in the online form on the Boost website or call 0800 488 0057.
For further information, contact:
Stephen Axon, communications service, Lancashire County Council
01772 533 194 / [email protected]
Notes to editors:
Boost Business Lancashire (Boost) is the £7.2million Lancashire Business Growth Hub led by the Lancashire LEP (Local Enterprise Partnership). The aim of Boost is to grow the county’s economy by £20m and create at least 1,200 new jobs and safeguard 700 more by summer 2015.
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.
The service is being delivered via a partnership between Lancashire County Council, Community Business Partners, Lancaster University, Regenerate Pennine Lancashire, UCLan and Winning Pitch, with £3.6million of funding provided by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
Boost also helps businesses access specialist private sector business support, as well as other nationally funded programmes, where relevant.
The Boost project is part financed by the European Regional Development Fund Programme 2007 to 2013. The Department for Communities and Local Government is the managing authority for the European Regional Development Fund Programme, which is one of the funds established by the European Commission to help local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support local businesses and create jobs. For more information visit www.gov.uk/browse/business/funding-debt/european-regional-development-funding