Ambitious technology-orientated entrepreneurs in Bradford are being encouraged to sign up for a free accelerator programme to help them grow their businesses.
Northern Max Accelerator, launching in early 2023, is an intensive ten-week programme for businesses that are pre-start or less than three years old with growth ambitions.
It’s the sixth time the programme has run in the city, with more than 100 entrepreneurs supported so far, creating 44 new jobs, and getting help to access over £300,000 in grants, loans, and finance to accelerate their business growth plans.
Although Northern Max Accelerator, which is backed by business support programme AD:VENTURE, is run in Bradford, it is open to all eligible businesses across the Leeds City Region.
It includes a range of practical support with delegates helped to create a business plan, set goals, understand their audience and route to market, and consider future business growth strategies.
There are specialist workshops, expert mentoring and opportunities to access funding, with the chance for potential investment at the end by pitching to a panel of experts.
The most recent successful pitch was by David Owumi, whose start-up business, Qinq, is developing a software tool to help businesses to sell, re-use and re-purpose waste, preventing items ending up in landfill.
David said: “Northern Max is all you need to transform your business ideas into a marketable reality. The facilitators, organisers and partners make the programme impactful and memorable. I made good friends too!”
Northern Max will be run again this year by Greenborough Management Limited on behalf of AD:VENTURE.
Michelle Davis, head of business development at Greenborough, said: “There are so many new and exciting businesses in Leeds City Region, hungry for success but in need of some targeted guidance to help them level up.
“Attendees will learn how to make the most of commercial opportunities despite the ongoing recovery of the economy after the impact of COVID-19. We’re looking forward to introducing the Northern Max Accelerator to new participants, giving young businesses from the area a genuine and exciting advantage.”
AD:VENTURE is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), along with other funding and delivery partners across the Leeds City Region, including Bradford Council.
Cllr Alex Ross-Shaw, Bradford Council’s portfolio holder for regeneration, planning and transport, said: “There’s really nothing else like this for businesses in our region and we are proud to run it here in Bradford.
“The aim is to help scale-up young digital and technology-focused businesses and make the area attractive for tech communities and investment and bring much-needed jobs to the region.
“We know it is an intensive 10-weeks, but we also know that a business with strong roots will become ready for expansion and remain resilient in the face of future challenges.”
And the support doesn’t stop at the end of the ten weeks, as AD:VENTURE offers support for businesses up to three years old, with access to mentoring, funding and further workshops.