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'Mighty' new business programme launched in Rotherham

posted 18 Oct 2017, 02:18 by RiDO Rotherham   [ updated 18 Oct 2017, 02:18 ]

An initiative to develop start-up and new businesses across Rotherham with free, tailored help and support launched last week. 

'Mighty' will deliver everything from practical help and advice, such as finding premises or preparing contracts, to testing and developing business ideas, through to one to one mentoring and coaching. 

Part of the Sheffield City Region Launchpad scheme which delivers business support across the region, Mighty has been tailored by Rotherham Council’s RIDO team and developed in line with Council plans to back local business growth. 

Amanda Parris, RIDO’s Business Growth Manager, said: “Mighty will work with entrepreneurs and new business to really test and hone ideas, make the most of all their opportunities and be prepared to confront any risks. 

We’re also working with businesses under 24 months old who are looking to grow, perhaps taking on staff or moving premises, or diversify their offering. There’s a team of experts waiting to mentor and support businesses like this in the region, and it’s all free.” 

For more details about Mighty, click here

Yorkshire exporters offered match funding to tap into overseas markets

posted 18 Oct 2017, 01:53 by RiDO Rotherham   [ updated 18 Oct 2017, 01:53 ]

Yorkshire businesses new to exporting or already selling overseas could be eligible for match funding worth up to £5,000 towards the costs of investigating new international markets. The £6.7m European programme was highlighted by ExportExchange, the free peer-to-peer overseas trade network for businesses.

Under the £6.7m European Regional Development Fund, Exporting for Growth programme SMEs in the Sheffield City Regions and the Humber LEP can access match funding of up to 60 per cent of the costs of developing exports.

Investment eligible for financial support under the programme, which is delivered by Enterprise Growth Solutions, includes overseas travel, international exhibition costs, language training and export consultancy. Registering products in new markets and developing internationally targeted marketing materials is also eligible.

Click here for more details.

Metalysis named as first European Space Agency Grand Challenger

posted 17 Oct 2017, 04:13 by RiDO Rotherham   [ updated 17 Oct 2017, 04:14 ]

Rotherham based Metalysis, the UK company with technology to produce metal and alloys powders used in aerospace, automotive and 3D printing applications, was honoured this week by The European Space Agency (ESA).

In a public ceremony at the end of the Global Space Economic Workshop (GSEW) in Paris, France, Eric Morel de Westgaver, ESA Director for Industry, Procurement and Legal Affairs, presented to Metalysis CEO, Dr. Dion Vaughan, a certificate naming Metalysis as first ESA Grand Challenger. 

This certificate coincides with the beginning of a consultation process with the 22 Governments of ESA’s Member States, which precedes the launch of the first Metalysis-ESA Grand Challenge; a research and development sponsored by Metalysis.

The Metalysis-ESA Grand Challenge will propose a new R&D project to investigate In Situ Resource Utilisation (ISRU); a programme of work on the extraction and production of valuable metals and advanced terrestrial manufacturing technologies that pose potential solutions for the future space economy, as Metalysis continues with its industrial expansion in South Yorkshire.

Metalysis has spent more than a decade developing and scaling up its electrochemical technology that converts refined oxides and unbeneficiated ores directly into metal powders, often used in high value manufacturing and 3D printing applications.

In South Yorkshire, the Company is scaling up ‘Generation 4’ of its technology. Generation 4, which Metalysis is on track to complete in 2017, will enable ‘Generation 5’: manufacturing options for thousands of tonnes per annum of metal and alloy powders.

Speaking from GSEW, Metalysis CEO, Dr. Dion Vaughan, said:

“An R&D project which contemplates taking our technology and applying it to 3D printing systems in terraforming environments is an ambitious undertaking, enabled by our next phase of scale-up in the UK.

“ESA’s focus on developing transferable technologies, with industries offering economic benefits on earth and in space, is an excellent fit for Metalysis as we progress to our Generation 5 project, which will showcase multiple modular electrochemical units, adjustable within a Factory of the Future manufacturing scenario.”

Boeing Starts Construction of its First European Production Facility

posted 15 Sep 2017, 03:19 by RiDO Rotherham   [ updated 17 Oct 2017, 02:28 ]

Boeing ceremonially broke ground this week at the Sheffield Business Park site where its first European manufacturing facility will be built. The 6,200-square-metre building, due to open in late 2018, will manufacture actuation system components for Boeing’s Next-Generation 737, 737 MAX and 777 aeroplanes.

The Sheffield facility is part of Boeing’s broader plan to grow in-house production of selective technologies. The Boeing Sheffield team will manufacture key actuation systems with improved productivity, enhanced production efficiency and reduced costs while maintaining quality. 

"Seven months after announcing our intention to build a factory in South Yorkshire, we are proud to celebrate the ground-breaking of Boeing Sheffield and welcome more Boeing employees to our company,” said Sir Michael Arthur, president of Boeing Europe and managing director of Boeing UK and Ireland. “Boeing Sheffield is further evidence of Boeing’s long-term commitment to the prosperity of this country. We are grateful to the communities of Sheffield and Rotherham, as well as Sheffield City Council and the Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership, for supporting Boeing Sheffield and our growing presence in the region."

Boeing Sheffield will be a part of Boeing Fabrication, the company’s in-house parts-manufacturing operation. When it opens, Boeing Sheffield will produce as many as 8,000 components per month that will be shipped to Boeing Portland, to be assembled into actuation systems. The Sheffield facility will initially employ 30 people on opening, growing to more than 50 employees. This includes 19 manufacturing apprentices, who have already been recruited and are being trained at the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) Training Centre in Rotherham.

"We are delighted to welcome Boeing Sheffield, our newest member of the Boeing Fabrication family," said Kimberly Smith, vice president and general manager of Boeing Fabrication. "The partnership between our sites in Sheffield and Portland is a win-win for aerospace innovation and our global growth strategy, as we develop a new source of expertise and talent in the U.K. and connect it with a high-performing, growing Boeing site in the U.S."

“We are proud and delighted to have helped bring Boeing to the Sheffield City Region. This region has unsurpassed brilliance in research and advanced manufacturing capabilities, and it is a tribute to the partnership working with the University of Sheffield, Boeing, and the local authorities that this investment, and the exciting future it represents, has come about,” said Sir Nigel Knowles, chairman of the Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership.

Boeing also plans to initiate a major Research & Development program with the AMRC, which was originally established in 2001 with Boeing as a founding partner, to develop new manufacturing techniques that can be applied to the Boeing Sheffield facility and then leveraged across Boeing at large.

The UK Government and Boeing announced a long-term initiative for prosperity and growth in the UK in July 2016. Boeing continues to look for ways to deliver additional UK growth across its commercial, defence and services businesses with valued partners and suppliers.

For more information visit

First Citylink Tram Train Goes into Passenger Operation

posted 13 Sep 2017, 06:38 by RiDO Rotherham   [ updated 13 Sep 2017, 06:38 ]

The Tram Train project team will be joined by representatives from Sheffield Children’s Hospital this week for the introduction of the first Citylink Tram Train into passenger service. 

Passengers in South Yorkshire will be the first in Great Britain to travel on the innovative tram vehicle when it goes into operation from Meadowhall, on its inaugural journey across the Supertram network, on Thursday 14 September. The vehicle, designed to run on both city tramlines and the main rail network, will initially be used to support the existing tram service across the network until the new tram train route to Rotherham is opened in 2018.  
To celebrate the occasion, Stagecoach Supertram and South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive (SYPTE) will be naming the first tram after The Children's Hospital Charity’s mascot, Theo. The hospital’s Chief Executive Officer, John Somers will accompany Theo to a naming ceremony at Stagecoach’s depot at Nunnery Square, before the tram continues to Meadowhall. They will all be joined by Transport Minister Paul Maynard MP. 
On this occasion, passengers will be invited to make a donation to the charity rather than paying a fare.
The tram will also be in service on Sunday 17 September as a special charity service with Supertram staff collecting donations for The Children's Hospital Charity once again. Three of South Yorkshire’s seven new Citylink vehicles will be used in the regular Supertram timetable from October, following a progressive introduction.
Tram Train passenger services are expected to run from Sheffield to Rotherham from 2018, once rail infrastructure work, testing and driver training is complete.

Construction begins on Rotherham's new University Campus

posted 12 Sep 2017, 02:04 by RiDO Rotherham   [ updated 12 Sep 2017, 02:04 ]

Construction work has started on the RNN Group's new £12m campus, University Centre Rotherham (UCR). 

The 35,500 sq ft campus will open in September 2018 on Doncaster Gate and will provide degrees, higher level and professional qualifications for approximately 560 people on a typical term day.

The centre will house a mix of teaching rooms, IT suites, exhibition space, open plan learning spaces, a café and social areas.

Cllr. Chris Read, leader of Rotherham Council, will join representatives of RNN Group, and the contractors, Willmott Dixon at the site this week to dig the first soil.

Cllr. Read said: "Having a university centre is a key part of the town's regeneration and I am delighted that it is going ahead.

"We have a skills gap in Rotherham and that is one thing that is holding the town back. But some of our people are also being held back. If they can get better qualifications they will be able to get better jobs, progress in their careers, increase their income and that can only be good for the town."

The RNN Group has been working closely with 200 of over 1,000 employers to develop courses that particularly meet a need for the local economy. More than 50 different courses are expected to be running by 2020, including digital, creative, health, technical construction, engineering, and leadership and management. The target is to attract 1,000 additional students over the first five years, with, it's hoped, many of those students also going on to create new businesses in the town.

John Connolly, chief executive of the RNN Group, said: "Providing local access to university education in Rotherham will make a real difference to individuals, businesses and the local economy.

"The University Centre will provide new opportunities for those who might not have considered university as an option in the past. The combination of lower fees and the chance to live at home whilst studying locally will bring Higher Education right into the heart of Rotherham, helping to create a skills and jobs revolution in the town."

Rotherham Council has provided the land for the campus in a cut price deal. The Sheffield City Region (SCR) Combined Authority has agreed to fund infrastructure works. A grant of £3.5m has been approved with the balance coming from RNN Group.

Nigel Brewster, vice chair of the Sheffield City Region LEP said: "This is an important and welcome development which will help both adult students and our regional businesses. We have backed the funding because we know there is a skills gap in the region and we want to help address it.

"This investment in infrastructure will help companies who will be able to recruit skilled workers and grow their businesses, creating more jobs.

"It is an exciting and visionary way forward which will benefit the whole region."

Digital Growth Programme Launched For South Yorkshire Businesses

posted 5 Sep 2017, 08:28 by RiDO Rotherham   [ updated 5 Sep 2017, 08:29 ]

A new initiative has been launched offering free bespoke and structured advice and support to help South Yorkshire businesses maximise uptake of new and developing digital technologies.

The Superfast South Yorkshire Digital Growth Programme will see 60 full-day action-planning workshops and 20 three-hour awareness-raising seminars held across the region in the next 14 months.

Themes covered by the programme will include digital marketing for start-ups, planning an effective website, search engine optimisation and analytics, eCommerce, using social media, working with images and video, utilising data, cloud computing, cyber resilience, email marketing and blogging.

The programme is being delivered by East Midlands Chamber. Natalie Ward, programme manager for Superfast South Yorkshire, said: "Businesses are the engine room that power local economies, but knowing the true value of digital technology and understanding what is right for your businesses can be a daunting challenge. That makes it all too easy to miss out on opportunities for improvement.

"The programme we're delivering seeks to encourage enterprises with growth aspirations to explore and introduce new and emerging ICT products to improve their competitiveness and productivity."

Superfast South Yorkshire is the partnership between the authorities of Barnsley, Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield and BT, which secured millions to ensure South Yorkshire will have access to superfast broadband.

Organisations will have to meet eligibility criteria to take part in the programme – which is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) - but once accepted could be entitled to financial support through the Superfast South Yorkshire Connection and Innovation voucher scheme.

The initiative has the aim of supporting over 100 organisations which could lead to the creation of 16 new businesses.

Details of the funded events can be found here.

Source: Rothbiz

Launchpad Programmed Supports Rotherham Entrepreneur's Export Plans

posted 5 Sep 2017, 08:03 by RiDO Rotherham   [ updated 5 Sep 2017, 08:10 ]

Rotherham-based Chelsey Peart is using her experience to set up in business selling hand-crafted bridal accessories.

After studying Fashion Design at University and building a career as an art and textiles teacher, the talented 26 year-old from Rawmarsh began producing intricately beaded bridal accessories including garters, head pieces and chokers, all of which are individually made and tailored to the needs of her growing international clientele.

Over the past eight months Chelsey has been working alongside a dedicated business advisor from the Launchpad programme, helping her to develop and refine her business plans as well as spending time developing a digital marketing strategy to drive sales and build her newly developed brand.

Since Chelsey started working with Launchpad, her unique hand-made products have attracted global interest. She has secured orders from brides across the world including America and New Zealand. Her business, Chelsey Crossland Bespoke, has also secured deals with a number of retail outlets across South Yorkshire and she is setting her sights on launching her own boutique in the future.

The success of Chelsey's bridal range has given her the confidence to add new lines to her first collection and she is currently working on a new diffusion line which includes gothic-inspired alternative pieces. In addition to her custom made bridal accessories, self-confessed magpie Chelsey is drawing inspiration from the roaring twenties, Latin and ballroom costumes and even chandeliers and ornate gilded window frames to add glitz and glamour to her new range, adding occasional dresses, loungewear and beachwear to her luxury lifestyle brand.

Chelsey Peart, founder of Chelsey Crossland Bespoke, which is based in Wentworth, said: "If someone had told me this time last year I would be receiving orders for my designs from the four corners of the world I would have laughed at them, but since I started working with Launchpad, that's exactly what's happened!

"I liked the idea of running a business, but working full-time meant I couldn't always attend the training workshops due to my classroom commitments. I wanted to find a way of sharing my two passions in life, creating beautiful products and inspiring others in the classroom.

"Fashion has always been an important part of my life and began with my love of the eclectic. Seeing my collection on the catwalk at London Fashion Week gave me a much needed confidence boost. It made me realise people liked my work and were genuinely interested in the designs I produced. It planted a seed in my mind and I'd find myself waking up at 3am and reaching for the nearest thing I could find to jot down new design ideas.

"I decided that 2017 was my now or never moment: Until this year I was designing with no real outlet to exhibit my work. Making beautiful things makes me feel excited about life. There have been ups and downs along the way, but the support and recommendations I've received from the Launchpad team has been beyond my wildest dreams. It's not only helped me to develop my business ideas, but encouraged me to believe in myself."

Julia Millea, business advisor, SCR Launchpad, added: "Chelsey is an immensely talented designer, but as she was employed full-time she felt unable to develop her business ideas further. From the outset she had a very clear idea as to what she wanted to achieve, but like many people, wasn't sure where to start when it came to running a business.

"It is always rewarding to help individuals who are clearly passionate and dedicated about a subject to see them achieve their goals. Launchpad was set up to help people who are thinking of running a business, enabling them to access the right advice at the right time. We've been working with Chelsey from a very early stage in her business journey, helping her to develop a robust business plan which is already attracting attention from fashion-savvy brides to be from across the world who are looking for something truly special and unique for their big day."

Source: Rothbiz

Growth Hub Enhancement Project nears 150 applications

posted 10 Aug 2017, 08:03 by RiDO Rotherham   [ updated 10 Aug 2017, 08:03 ]

Nearly 150 high-growth businesses within the Sheffield City Region have now submitted applications for help to achieve their growth potential from the Sheffield City Region Growth Hub Enhancement Project.

Launched just over a year ago, the assistance provided by the project to the businesses located throughout the nine Local Authorities that make up the Sheffield City Region, aims to boost the Sheffield City Region’s economy by adding more jobs and increasing the GVA of the SMEs in the Region.

Dave Grimes, Head of the Sheffield City Region Growth Hub, said: “The Growth Hub Enhancement Project has been a fantastic addition to the suite of business support offered by the Growth Hub.”

“The journey from its inception in April 2016 to now, where we are actively helping businesses, has been remarkable and we hope to celebrate a lot more successes over the coming weeks, months and years.”

Working with local businesses with high-growth potential, the Growth Hub Enhancement Project aims to provide business support in areas where there is no existing provision.

Businesses receive support tailored exclusively to their needs through liaison with a dedicated, expert Growth Specialist with access to grants which can support growth projects.

There is access to a suite of free masterclasses that businesses can sign up to, which provide advice on a range of topics, from employee engagement and business law, to tendering and digital marketing. Masterclass content is driven by demand from businesses across Sheffield City Region.

Advisors work with the business to identify relevant support for their business needs and assist in every step of the process – removing the need for the business to research or understand sometimes complex support initiatives.

Over half of the successful applicants have currently received approval for specialist support grants and started their growth activity utilising external specialists, whilst a number of businesses have already received support and grants and completed the identified work to enable their growth.

Stagecoach launch new bus route to Doncaster Sheffield Airport

posted 9 Aug 2017, 07:07 by RiDO Rotherham   [ updated 9 Aug 2017, 07:08 ]

Passengers from Sheffield and Rotherham travelling to Doncaster Sheffield Airport have a new option thanks to Stagecoach Yorkshire.

The first ever direct bus route from Sheffield city centre to Doncaster Sheffield Airport (DSA) sets off on September 2nd and will operate 7 days a week, taking approximately 45 minutes to reach the terminal building.

This news comes on the same day that the airport announced its Summer 2018 routes with Flybe to 10 destinations across Europe including Paris, Dublin, Faro and Malaga now on sale for travel up to June 8.

Steve Gill, chief executive of Doncaster Sheffield Airport said: “This is excellent news all round for our passengers. We are thrilled that Stagecoach Yorkshire is introducing this new route from Sheffield to the airport.

“This is a further step in improving our connectivity and strengthens our proposition to the rest of the travel and airline industry.”

The service will operate eight times a day from Sheffield serving peak flight times in the early morning and evening focusing on Wizzair and Flybe flights from the airport. 

Matt Davies, managing director of Stagecoach Yorkshire, said: “We are extremely pleased to be launching this new service from Sheffield city centre to Doncaster Sheffield Airport.

“We are keen to support the growth of Doncaster Sheffield Airport which we see as an important regional asset whose growth will only be of wider benefit to the region.

“We’ve worked closely with the team at the airport to develop a schedule that works with their busiest flight times and we are looking forward to working with partners to develop this service further in the future to accommodate more flight times“

The 737 Stagecoach bus service will depart from Sheffield Interchange, from Saturday September 2nd, with the first service leaving at 4.45am calling at Wickersley, Bramley, and arriving at the DSA terminal at 5.30am.

Tickets for the new service cost just £6 single fare, £6.30 for an unlimited travel explorer ticket which also includes Supertram services and £10 for a family explorer ticket for two adults and up to three children.

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