A Successful Inaugural Enterprise Week
The inaugural Enterprise Week for the Causeway Coast and Glens took place from March 2 – 9 to inspire and guide local entrepreneurs to succeed in business.
Organised by Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, in partnership with the Causeway Chamber, Causeway Enterprise Agency, Roe Valley Enterprises and a host of business support agencies, it featured events to suit all businesses at various stages of their entrepreneurial journey.
From Hobby to Market
Those interested in exploring the possibility of taking their product to markets, had the opportunity to speak to staff from the Naturally North Coast and Glens about how to take those first steps and what products are currently in high demand. The event also details inventives and support available to potential stallholders.
Primary 6 Masterclass
We welcomed Primary 6 pupils from schools within the Borough to a “Business Masterclass” presented by Young Enterprise NI across two locations. Pupils heard from local entrepreneurs and learnt about the “supply chain” between companies and consumers. They ended the session by designing their very own fruit juice carton.
Digital Marketing Bootcamp
Business owners attended a Digital Marketing Bootcamp led by Sand Marketing and left with useful tools and techniques for using digital marketing appropriately in their businesses. The big message from the morning was “Don’t sell, tell” Use visual content and customer testimonials to tell your story and to build trust, and this, in turn will help sell your product or service. It is important to create content that captures your audience’s attention. ”Entertain, educate inspire and convince” your customers.
Women in Business "Be Bold for Progress" Conference
The second Women in Business “Be Bold For Progress” conference was held on International Women’s Day where ladies present got to hear from entrepreneurs in publishing, travel, food and technology including Grainne Kelly from BubbleBum, the innovative car booster seat and former ‘Dragon’ Norah Casey, publishing entrepreneur. Key takeaways on becoming an entrepreneur included:
- “Have the belief in yourself to make the bold step to do it on your own.”
- “There is no such thing as Can’t” and
- “Take every opportunity as it presents itself”.
For more news about the conference, please read HERE
The Prince's Trust Information Session
The Prince’s Trust spoke to budding entrepreneurs aged 18 to 30 about their enterprise programme where they could explore enterprise before finally committing heavily to their business idea. This included a test marketing grant to help you try an idea out without prohibitive costs, as well as being assigned a volunteer mentor to help guide you on your entrepreneurial journey.
For further information, please click on the Prince's Trust logo below or email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 028 9089 5000
Financing the Business
Financing the Business hosted by Roe Valley Enterprises provided a great mix of traditional and alternative funders including Enterprise NI and our Rural Development Programme in Coast and Glens Borough Council.
Among the main takeaways were:
- Have a detailed business plan written and be prepared to answer questions about it and demonstrate affordability in your cash flow projections. Be honest and open about your past credit ratings.
- Seek help from professions in preparing necessary information - this is where Council's Alchemy Business Mentoring programme can help, along with its business support partners.
- Under the Rural Development Programme, eligible rural businesses can apply for up to 50% funding between £5k and £30k to take on rural tourism activities, construction and related services, IT services and much more.
- Enterprise NI, as an alternative to banks, can lend up to £25k for loan terms between 1 and 5 years. They can deal with a higher risk portfolio of clients. They help businesses to get back on their feet and re-enter mainstream lending.
A very successful Job Fair was hosted in partnership with the Department for Communities. 45 employers plus 10 employment support agenices took part, to help match prospective employees to paid vacancies with the employers present.
If you are a business in the Causeway Coast and Glens needing signposted to the appropriate help, please get in touch by emailing email@example.com or phoning 028 7776 0311 to speak to our business support team.
Our Enterprise Week Partners
We are grateful to our Enterprise Week partners for collaborating on this programme of events.
Click on each of their logos to find out more about each partner.