City : Enterprise Centre : Sources of Support
Who can help?
Even if you are starting a business on your own, you don't need to do it all alone. Most of the time, doing everything by yourself would be far too difficult - so getting support is vital!
Some support services will also continue to help you once you're up and running as well as throughout start-up, so make sure to check for extended support.
Below we've listed some organisations that can help you set up and run your new business venture:
The Real Business Club
The Real Business Club provides events and hands-on Start-Up Workshops to help professionals and entrepreneurs start their business, or move up to the next level, to get established and grow.
Check their website for information on their services and events that they offer - you can also check their contact details if you'd like more information on how they can help!
The Prince's Trust
The Prince’s Trust can offer financial help and lots of advice to 18-30 year olds living in the UK, online or in person.
On their website they've got plenty of help including business plan templates, finance advice, marketing guidance, sustainability. They can also help get you a business mentor - so take look online or contact them to see how they can help you!
They also offer startup business grants through their Enterprise Programme, or grants to support you in developing your education and training. It has incredible resources to help with all stages of starting your own business!
Reading Borough Council
For local business information and help and support with subjects such as licensing and business rates (if applicable) check out the Reading Borough Council website or contact them!
Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce
The Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce Group works with businesses across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Swindon to help them achieve their full business potential.
You can join and become a memeber where you can take advantage of a range of services including business advice, networking events, training and international trade support.
To find out more about the local Reading & Wokingham Chamber, click here.
Thames Valley Berkshire Local Enterprise
The Thames Valley Berkshire Local Enterprise Partnership work across Berkshire to support business growth and promote sustainability.
There is lots of interesting information on their website regarding local business and they also offer some support and funding - so take a look!
Federation of Small Business
The Federation of Small Business is an organisation promoting and protecting the interests of the self-employed and small business in the UK.
You can become a member to get support - legally as well as socially. They offer lots of advice on legalities, finance, networking, communications, and lots more!
The Company Warehouse
The Company Warehouse provides a range of business services including help starting up a business, help with marketing, bookeeping, and websites. They offer different packages at a range of prices to give you the right business support for you.
They also have a free online guide to setting up a limited company which might come in handy!
Employability Town have a free innovative online course for young entrepreneurs to develop business ideas. You can access any of the courses for free by using the code ELEVATEME.
Networking can be useful for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) either simply to meet people in the same situation as you, or to find new ways to help each other do business.
Clubs for business networking that we recommend looking at are:
- First Friday Club - a networking events club holding events at Pentahotel Reading.
- The Real Business Club - working across Berkshire.
- The Business Forum - working within the Thames Valley.
You can also check out Networking in Berkshireto check for any up-coming business networking events!
Government Business and Self Employment Support
On the GOV UK website you can find lots of information about setting-up a business, business regulations and guidance on self-employment in the UK.
There's lots of relevant, useful, and important information on the GOV UK website, so if you're starting a business make sure to check it out!