Social enterprises set to Accelerate

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Six local enterprises in Sheffield will share a £100,000 loan after persuading a panel of ‘dragons’ their work has a social impact.

The Accelerate project ran a one-day workshop for social enterprises which included an investment readiness masterclass, briefings on how to borrow money and a Q&A.

From that, seven organisations were invited back for a Dragon’s Den style pitching session. And six were successful.

They were: LTBL Productions, Bike Rehab, 4Everyone Social, Riverside Live, Redfern Studios, WOW Academy, Mobile Power and Tiny Diner.

All can now access a share of £100,000 with patient repayment terms.

John Rigby, local economy manager at Creative Sheffield, said: “We are really keen to make a lasting economic and social impact on the local economy with this £100,000 investment. There are some great social firms in Sheffield that can do even better if we can unlock their potential through this support and investment.”

Accelerate is run by Neil Coulson Associates, Element.li, and Groundwork on behalf of the council. Its aim is to offer an intensive, bespoke business support programme with tailored investment packages.

WOW Academy offers work experience for young people in business administration, marketing, customer service and sales. Mobile Power is a Sheffield based social enterprise developing off-grid power solutions for use in the developing world. Riverside Live provides arts and media training facilities in Kelham Island.

The main aim of 4Everyone Social is to provide an online recruitment service to unemployed people. Redfern Studios allows the producers to work closely with musicians and bands. Bike Rehab provides service and repair of bicycles to keep people cycling.