Powering UK businesses to start, scale and succeed

Powering UK businesses to start, scale and succeed

Ahead of the official opening of the London Entrepreneurial Spark Hub on September 5th, hear from Head of Entrepreneurship Gordon Merrylees on how the hubs support the entrepreneurial ecosystems of 13 cities across the UK.

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Gordon Merrylees
RBS Head of Entrepreneurship
Blog

04 September 2017

Members of the London NatWest Entrepreneurial Spark Hub

Bootcamp members at NatWest's London Entrepreneurial Spark Hub

Last month for the very first time we saw Entrepreneurial Spark bootcamps running in all 13 of our key UK regional city entrepreneur hub locations, including our brand new London hub. The bootcamps welcomed 650 new entrepreneurs to one of our four Entrepreneurial Spark programmes: Sprint, Enable, Grow or Scale, to help them achieve their ambitions for their business.  In 2017 our hubs will support and accelerate in excess of 3,000 entrepreneurs by providing networks, 1:1 enablement, mentoring, desk space and IT in a nurturing co-working environment, all with growth and scale in mind.

Bootcamp events

During our bootcamp events, entrepreneurs meet each other and get a real taste of what to expect from the bank and our partner Entrepreneurial Spark. The key focuses for the bootcamp are ‘Entrepreneurial Leadership’, ‘Mind-sets’ and ‘Behaviours’, including a variety of tools and techniques that can help focus and accelerate businesses ambitions. Whether these businesses are at an early stage and are trying to better understand their customers and their business idea, or are really trying to scale their established business by raising significant investment or entering new markets; there’s a bespoke journey offered on our programmes to support all of these key ambitions.

Connecting to expertise

The real power behind our programmes is the fantastic networks that we create. Entrepreneurs at our 13 hubs have access to expertise and knowledge from the bank, our customers and our supply chain networks - we see this as a really compelling proposition for any ambitious entrepreneur in the UK.

Our Entrepreneurial Spark hubs are now seen as a centre of excellence in the city they are located in, playing a key part in these regional entrepreneurial ecosystems.  The hubs regularly host events led by the bank in collaboration with partners like the Princes Trust, Dell EMC, KPMG and Pinsent Masons but also work collaboratively in the regional ecosystems with Venture Capital Funders, local universities, Chambers, tech networks, enterprise agencies, large corporates and of course local entrepreneurs. This creates a thriving focal point of entrepreneurship that educates, creates networks and inspires peer-to-peer learning and collaborating towards a common goal.

Our Entrepreneurship strategy is anchored to the communities and regional cities close to our hubs and the fantastic business success we see every day from our entrepreneurs and their businesses as they start, scale and succeed, and become the fabric of economic growth of tomorrow.

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