Launch Day Has Arrived
Richard Croft, Toby Durrant and Paddy Bishopp are united by shared experience of having launched their own businesses, learned by mistakes, and travelled the challenging entrepreneurial path to success.
Today, they share a desire to pass on the benefit of their experiences, and to pour their passion and enthusiasm into helping Suffolk entrepreneurs achieve. Their vision is to provide the kind of mentoring and support network which would have been so useful in their early professional lives, and which can put a new generation on to the right path in an increasingly complex business world. This motivation and aspiration has given way to the launch of Shout About Suffolk – The Suffolk Business Start Up Lab.
While this concept has been discussed in the past by many organisations and individuals within the county, it is finally being made possible through the inspired thinking of this trio.
Richard, through his success in business, has very generously financed the launch of The Lab and has tasked Toby and Paddy with ‘making it happen’.
Self-Taught, like minded with a passion for giving back, Toby and Paddy see The Lab as the perfect way to work alongside entrepreneurs, pass on their knowledge, and witness the birth of great new enterprises in the region.
Shout About Suffolk will help drive innovation, encourage entrepreneurship, and all the while promote the wealth of talent across the county.
The Lab will house between six and eight start-up companies at any one time.
These businesses will be supported through initial funding, in conjunction with mentoring and back office IT support.
This is a pathway to either self-sufficiency or next stage investment. Through the incubation process the Shout About Suffolk team can truly accelerate the process and build a platform for success.
Upstairs from The Lab, will be The Hub.
This social enterprise is a collaborative and creative space designed for up to 20 entrepreneurs who have the seeds of a business idea or already run a start-up/small business and want to have like-minded people around them. They desire an innovative environment.
Incorporated within this element, the team will deliver a Mentoring and Networking Club where members get access to mentoring and networking sessions, as well as being part of a community.
For those who do not have physical space in The Hub, there is also an on-line membership, with access to all the mentoring support and Shout About Suffolk’s online learning Library.
Through a Corporate Sponsorship Programme, 10 bursaries are being made available to future entrepreneurs with limited finances but a great business idea. Beneficiaries can get free membership to The Hub.
Shout About Suffolk is very much about social enterprise. It has an ethos based in the provision of nurturing support and the celebration of talent.
We are fortunate to already have secured Birketts and Ensors – two extremely successful corporates – as sponsors for 2019 bursary places.
All Lab Entrepreneurs get one to one support from the Corporate Partners and The Hub and online community are offered fast track access to them.
Finally, Shout About Suffolk has a ‘Young Enterprise Support Programme’ and will be working with schools and Higher Education to promote Entrepreneurialism and introduce the skill sets required and the confidence to look at their business ideas.
We are excited by the future potential of this new concept for the county and hope to positively touch many lives across the region.