By Ian Dipple Friday 12 October 2012 Updated: 12/10 10:36
A SURGE in the number of new businesses setting-up in the Redditch area has been praised as a 'positive' sign for the future of the town's economy.
Figures released by Duport Associates, a leading company formation agent, show in the first six months of this year there were 251 new business start-ups across the borough, a 14 per cent rise compared with the same period in 2011.
Peter Valaitis, managing director of Duport.co.uk, said the figures suggested there was economic growth in the area, despite gloomy forecasts nationally.
He also praised the Pitch Your Plan scheme created by Redditch Town Centre Partnership, which provides budding entrepreneurs with a financial and practical support package to help them set-up their own business in the Church Green, Unicorn Hill and Alcester Street area.
"The rising number of new company registrations in Redditch is a very positive sign for the future of the local economy," he said.
"The Town Partnership is wise to encourage entrepreneurial spirit through schemes such as Pitch Your Plan, as new business, especially in niche markets, will strengthen the economy of the area and quality of the town environment.
"With a rising number of company formations and funding available for innovative new businesses, the future of Redditch town centre looks to set to be very exciting indeed."
So far 15 people have expressed an interest in the scheme ahead of today's (Friday) 12noon deadline. Formal applications and business plans have to be submitted by Friday, October 29. Applicants will then get the chance to pitch to a panel of business chiefs at the start of November, who will then choose those which will receive support.
Ros Sidaway, director of Redditch TCP, said: "We're delighted by the number and quality of initial applications received, as well as the offers of help and advice from local businesses and suppliers in support of the Pitch Your Plan scheme.
This shows what can be done when people pull together to help address the issues our towns and high streets are facing."
Visit www.pitch4redditch.co.uk for more information.
A REDDITCH business park has become one of the hottest sites in the Midlands.
Over the past 12 months property consultants Harris Lamb has let over 45,000 sq ft at the Heming Road Industrial Estate which is jointly marketed with commercial property agents John Truslove.
Charles D’Auncey, director of Harris Lamb, said said while the economic climate remained challenging it was not as bad as reports suggested.
"For months we’ve been hearing tales of doom and gloom - that, in the Midlands in particular, the market is stagnant and un-moving and that the economy is causing businesses to close rather than expand. In reality, that simply isn’t the case."
Ian Parker, from John Truslove, added they had completed 11 lettings at the site for a range of businesses from bathroom equipment and fittings suppliers Chowart Ltd to building product manufacturer Kalsi Plastics.
In a further boost family run print firm Accel (UK) has just moved to a 9,000 sq ft unit in Arthur Street in Lakeside with a view to expanding the services it provides which could create additional jobs, while GreenMech, based outside Alcester, has just launched its new Arborist range of professional wood chipper and end of year figures show turnover is up 14 per cent on 2011.
Managing director Jonathan Turner said: "Over the last few years, despite the tough economic climate, GreenMech has invested significantly in its manufacturing capability. I am delighted to say that this all demonstrates British manufacturing is very much alive and well in this part of the Midlands."
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