Y-Accelerator: expert support to fast track businesses in Sheffield City Region

Sheffield City Region entrepreneurs, start-ups and businesses are being encouraged to apply for free expert support, development and one-to-one mentoring.

Promoted by Y-Accelerator
Tuesday, 3rd September 2019, 3:14 pm
From left: Amanda Parris, Business Growth Manager for RiDO; Gordon McRae, Special Projects Manager for Gripple; Hawa Talbot, founder of Fula Flavour; Keith Williams, Regional Manager at UKSE, Zelter Shelter founder, Lee Price; Simon Lancaster, Rocassa; David Grimes, Head of Sheffield City Region Growth Hub; Masango Shingairai, Senior Lecturer Sheffield Hallam University; Tim O’Connell, Head of RIDO.

The Y-Accelerator programme is offering business leaders of tomorrow the opportunity to benefit from a 12-week, fast track development package offering expert advice and specialist workshops.

The deadline for the programme is on Sunday September 15, so businesses, individuals and teams are being encouraged to get their entries in as soon as possible.

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The 12-week project runs from October to January 2020. It ends with each business or entrepreneur pitching to an audience of potential investors. UK Steel Enterprise is offering a £1,000 prize for the best pitch on the night.

Led by business experts from the public and private sector, Y-Accelerator is run by Rotherham Investment and Development Office (RiDO) and a resident entrepreneur from Sheffield manufacturer Gripple Ltd, on behalf of the Sheffield City Region Growth Hub.

The 10 businesses chosen to take part will have a bespoke programme of one-to-one support delivered on a part-time basis. They will also benefit from a series of workshop-style sessions delivered by industry specialists on building a strong customer proposition and financial model and learning to communicate their business values to customers and investors.

Dinnington healthy food and drink company, ‘The Food Circle Supermarket,’ took part in a previous Y-Accelerator.

Operations director James Barthorpe strongly recommends start-ups apply.

He said: “Initially, we found the business start-up the most challenging – building a retail model, finding marketing that worked to seek out our customers.

“The Y-Accelerator allowed us to refine our business idea quite a lot – we were able to properly focus on what our intentions were and raise it to that level.

“We’d definitely recommend it to other businesses – as beginners we were given an outsider’s perspective and your business is put through key processes you may not already know about.

“It also encouraged us to use a set of structures to put our ideas through – we found that it eliminates time wasting on unnecessary ideas.”

Amanda Parris, business growth manager for RiDO, said: “The Y-Accelerator programme is a truly fantastic, unique initiative and we offer a bespoke package for the people we work with.

“As well as a great idea, we want to work with people who think differently and who will soak up our specialist advice to create a viable, scalable business.

“People from all industry sectors are encouraged to apply, although logistics, manufacturing, and automation are especially of interest. We are delighted to run the programme for the sixth time, and we are looking forward to working with some more exciting businesses.”

The Y-Accelerator 2019/20 is inviting applications until 15th September through the Sheffield City Region Growth Hub portal.

For more information email:growthhub@sheffieldcityregion.org.uk or call 0333 000 0039.