A free support service for aspiring and early stage Liverpool city region entrepreneurs has helped create more than 1,000 new businesses and 239 extra jobs in three years. Tony McDonough reports
More than 1,000 new businesses and 239 additional have been created in the last three years thanks to the work Business & IP Centre Liverpool city region.
BIPC is a national network offering advice and support to aspiring and early stage entrepreneurs. This network is run by the British Library and was established in 2012. It secured £13m from the Government in 2020.
Since then the BIPC Liverpool City Region service, that is run from Liverpool’s Central Library, has helped to create 1,033 new businesses and 239 additional jobs, figures from the British Library reveal. A total of 2,628 businesses have received support.
Its work has generated an estimated £11m in GVA for the Merseyside economy. Data also shows that 62% of the entrepreneurs it has supported have been women, 27% identified themselves as from a minority ethnic community and 15% were disabled.
Young entrepreneurs have also benefited from support with 21% aged 35 and under and 54% of those accessing support came from the most deprived parts of the city region. BIPC Liverpool City Region is one of the top three performing BIPCs in the UK.
As well as the city centre base, its services are also delivered through other libraries across Liverpool as well as in St Helens, Wirral, Knowsley, Sefton and Halton.
Val Jones, acting head of libraries and information Service, said: “Over the last few years, demand for BIPC services has risen sharply and we have adapted and expanded our range of services to reflect the needs of the business community.
“The BIPC is often a lifeline for people starting and growing a business. These figures reflect the quality of our offer and the hard work and dedication of the BIPC team.
“Our Entrepreneur in Residence clinics led by Gary Millar and his team of professional volunteers have also played a critical role in providing people with quality advice and support to entrepreneurs.
“Their support and that of the wider business community has been invaluable and we are looking forward to continuing to help many more people turn their business ideas into a commercial reality.”
One Liverpool venture to benefit from BIPC’s supply was The Fermentation Station, founded by Amy Yarker and Sam Watson. It specialises in producing high-quality fermented foods.
Amy said: “The Fermentation Station grew out of a real passion for food, the community it creates, the traditions it harbours, and the cultures it engages.
Our simple, unpretentious team is obsessed with all things fermented and that sums up our mission, removing the pomposity of fermentation and helping make it accessible to everyone.
“We received support from BIPC Liverpool in relation to our trademarking. We had a one-to-one session with an IP lawyer based in Liverpool, who talked us through the process of applying for a trade mark and was available for follow-up queries during the entire process.
“Their ongoing support in terms of business networking and showcase events has been invaluable to our young business.”