Growth Start-Up Support Programme

Growth Start-up Logo

Long-term support that helps you plan, launch and develop your business. Our advisers can provide feedback on your business plans and ideas, and introduce you to additional services and ways of accessing finance.

Who is the service for?

This is an intensive programme of support designed for people who are serious about starting their own business.

This is a free service and we are looking to partner with Individuals who have the ambition to create a company that has the potential to employ five staff within the first three years and/or have turnover in excess of £250,000 within three years.

About the service

The Growth Start-Up Support Programme is designed to offer long-term support that helps you plan, launch and develop your business. Our advisors can provide feedback on your business plans and ideas and introduce you to additional services and ways of accessing finance. 

Start Smart Workshop
Our Start Smart Workshop runs fortnightly across Greater Manchester. It begins with an honest assessment of whether your idea 'stands up' and could form the basis of a successful business. It then covers the basics you need to understand to run a business, such as how to register and structure your company, details on tax and insurance and ways to find sources of finance, from start-up loans to dealing with banks and venture capital.

One to one support
Once you have attended the Start Smart Workshop and joined our programme you will be assigned one of our business advisors. They will be available to you throughout your journey from the early stages, through to providing advice and guidance once you have launched your business.


Networking is a business skill that is often overlooked and for some, it can be an intimidating and awkward experience. This is why we run a monthly networking event to help you gain confidence and learn different networking techniques in a relaxed environment with like-minded entrepreneurs.

Each event features a guest speaker covering a particular topic that is relevant to new businesses and we invite new business owners to share some of their experiences about setting up in business.

As part of the programme we also run a series of masterclasses. Delivered by specialists, they cover a whole range of subjects relevant to both start-up and established businesses, from taking a product to market, through to social and digital media.

Upcoming Events

View all events
Sales Masterclass (2)

Type: Workshops

Location: M1 6EU

Recruiting & Retention of Talent

Type: Workshops

Location: Manchester

Find out more about our masterclasses below.

The masterclass will cover:

  • Types of funding – debt, equity and other

  • What financial institutions are looking for and how best you can present your case.

  • Business plans and cash flow forecasts – an overview.

  • What the Growth Hub can do to assist

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This masterclass will cover:

  • How to develop the right type of relationship with your customers

  • How to talk to and understand your customers better

  • How to deal with and learn from complaints

  • How to understand customers’ journeys and where your product/service fits

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This masterclass will cover:

Taking Stock

  • Business achievements over 12 months

  • Business operations review

  • Barriers to growth/current challenges

  • Action Learning guided session focusing on solutions to challenges

Growth Aspirations

  • Product/services analysis

  • Target market analysis

  • Strategic partnerships in place

  • Marketing review

  • Sales strategy review

  • Action Planning

  • Action Learning guided session focusing on growth opportunities

Growth Plan Development

  • SMART Objectives year 2

  • Growth areas identified

  • Detailed Action planning

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This masterclass will cover:

  • Introduction – digital trends and the importance of your website within your overall online marketing strategy

  • Making sure your site is aligned to your business objectives

  • Setting website objectives – calls to action and conversions

  • Planning content to meet the needs of your target audience(s)

  • Technical considerations: SEO and Google Analytics

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This masterclass will cover:

  • Key legal issues

  • Understanding obligations to stakeholders

  • Protecting and developing your assets

  • How to do business safely

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This masterclass will cover:

  • Your product and/or business – what do you need to know and why?

  • SWOT analysis

  • PESTLE analysis

  • Primary research methods

  • Secondary research data and how to find it

  • Using data to inform decision making

  • Competitor analysis

  • Test trading

  • Using information gathered and collated to inform the business plan

  • Putting what you’ve learnt into practice

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This masterclass will cover:

  • Marketing strategy

  • Using the marketing mix to create a competitive advantage

  • Segmenting and targeting the market

  • Branding and image

  • Promotional strategy and implementation looking at a range of methods

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This monthly Central Manchester networking event will:

  • Help create a productive and supportive community of start-up businesses

  • Include short presentations from a couple of our clients

  • Give you an opportunity to network over refreshments

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This masterclass will cover:

An introduction to the art of selling:

  • What are you selling? Defining your business/product or service

  • Who should you be selling to?

  • Background psychology and principles of selling

  • The sales cycle

Understanding a sales strategy:

  • Sales strategy v marketing strategy

  • Setting out sales objectives, for the business and if needed each product / service

  • Sales analysis for your business

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This masterclass will cover:

  • Why we use social media in business

  • Social media platforms

  • Facebook

  • LinkedIn

  • Twitter

  • Social media management tools

  • You Tube

  • Blogs

  • Staying ahead of the online game

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This masterclass will cover:

  • Identifying a product niche and opportunity

  • Preparatory product development planning

  • Moving from niche product understanding to a product in commercial production and sale

  • Key legal issues

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This masterclass will cover:

  • Find opportunities to bid in public/private sectors

  • ‘Qualify’ opportunities; building sound business cases

  • Recognise ‘golden rules’ of bidding ensuring bid process is managed in an efficient and effective way

  • Understand what it takes to create a winning bid, not merely a compliant one

  • Identify business’s strengths, weaknesses, selling points

  • Begin to create a ‘knowledge base’

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This masterclass will cover:

  • Costs, revenue and profit

  • Income and expenditure

  • Cash flow

  • Break even

  • Profit and loss

  • Balance sheet

  • Personal survival budget

  • The importance of keeping records

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Case Study

Parent Hub

Growth Start-up

The Business Growth Hub has helped a former teacher to launch an innovative new app that helps parents become more involved with school life. A mixture of workshops and one-to-one advice has helped the business to become established and begin to make a difference to teachers, parents and young people across the UK.

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Case Study


Growth Start-up

The support of the Business Growth Hub’s start-up team has proved ‘invaluable’ to a Manchester games designer, who less than a year after going into business has been nominated for a top industry award.

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Case Study

All Survey

Growth Start-up

Advice covering the nuts and bolts of starting a business, together with help applying for a start-up loan, was the boost Gemma Voaden’s new business idea needed.

read more

How to access the service

To find our more, please contact:

Tel: 0161 359 3050

Business Growth Hub

Churchgate House
56 Oxford Street
M1 6EU

European Union - Investing in Your Future
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