This innovative alliance between the world’s largest free business accelerator programme, which counts RBS and NatWest as another key partner, and one of the leading professional services firms will bring a wealth of benefits to budding businesses across Britain over the next three years as part of the highly successful Entrepreneurial Spark programme.
Since forming in 2011, nearly 1000 start-ups have been supported with over 1,700 jobs created – all down to what Entrepreneurial Spark calls their ‘secret sauce’.
KPMG has committed to providing 1000 hours of support every month over the next three years as Entrepreneurial Spark continues its massive expansion throughout the UK.
Hot on the heels of Hatcheries being launched in Bristol, Leeds and Brighton at NatWest premises, the announcement of a tie-up with KPMG is yet another step on the road to the accelerator’s stated goal of creating a ‘golden age’ for entrepreneurs.
The three year deal will see KPMG working closely with Entrepreneurial Spark and RBS as it expands across the UK, with the professional services firm providing entrepreneurs with advice and guidance around issues such as developing better quality business plans; investor readiness; understanding the importance of cash and profit and recognising the impact of business decisions on company finances.
As part of the agreement, KPMG will have a dedicated presence at Entrepreneurial Spark’s head office in Glasgow delivering advice and guidance around investor readiness. Further one-to-one support will be provided in the Entrepreneurial Spark’s Hatcheries in RBS Gogarburn Edinburgh, Ayrshire and in NatWest premises across the UK
KPMG has committed to a mix of secondments and providing a pool of talent in each location to ensure entrepreneurs receive the best possible advice as they build their businesses.
KPMG will also boost Entrepreneurial Spark start-up six figure cash pot prize funds for all three Scottish locations annually, awarded to the best entrepreneurs.
Additionally, thousands of entrepreneurs supported by Entrepreneurial Spark and the bank will benefit from access to KPMG’s Small Business Accounting service, and KPMG will also bring its extensive network of business contacts and relationships to bear, enabling the entrepreneurs to access valuable business relationships and insight.
One of Entrepreneurial Spark’s most recent success stories is The Service Directory, a procurement firm founded by Gary Maitles that has emerged as a powerhouse in the sector with its innovative use of technology to create an unrivalled customer experience.
Gary, whose Glasgow-based firm signed a massive deal with Care England earlier this year, said: “It’s a great idea to team top-level accounting expertise with the unrivalled start-up support offered by Entrepreneurial Spark. KPMG are hugely respected worldwide and I know from my own experience that keeping on top of the numbers is one of the biggest challenges new businesses face.
“We at The Service Directory managed to meet those challenges and prosper but this tie-up will be of huge benefit to Scotland’s new generation of start-ups.”
Following a partnership with RBS and NatWest, Entrepreneurial Spark now has seven locations across the UK with Hatcheries in Birmingham, Bristol, Leeds and Brighton being announced in the last two months to add to the existing three Hatcheries in Glasgow, Ayrshire and Edinburgh. The multi-million pound partnership allows Entrepreneurial Spark and RBS and NatWest to offer free regional support to thousands of budding entrepreneurs.
Phil Charles, Head of Enterprise for KPMG in Scotland, spoke of the firm’s commitment to supporting fledgling businesses in and around the country through Entrepreneurial Spark.
Charles said: “At the heart of KPMG Enterprise is a deep-rooted commitment to providing coaching, support and advice to aspiring entrepreneurs, so we’re delighted that this new partnership with Entrepreneurial Spark and NatWest will enable us to provide a vital helping hand to early stage and growing ventures up and down the UK.
“Entrepreneurial Spark is working with the big businesses of tomorrow, so the more we can do to help entrepreneurs understand and get to grips with their numbers, and ultimately help them to secure investment, the better.
“We look forward to supporting our first intake of ambitious company owners over the coming months, and watching their businesses flourish.”