Thrive: Free Business Support Service Launched

A new business support service called Thrive has been launched, offering a range of business training and support services for the self-employed and small to medium-size enterprises (SMEs) in Devon, Plymouth, Somerset*, and Torbay.

The service aims to stimulate economic development through improving SME productivity and competitiveness, helping businesses to grow, create jobs, and reach new markets. 

It has been funded through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), so that the support is completely free of charge to eligible businesses in the Heart of the Southwest area.

What Support Is Available?

Thrive is a bespoke service, delivered by Business Information Point, North Devon Plus, and Cosmic, through their specialist business and digital advisors, who will work with you to identify what would most help your business.

Starting and growing a business can be both challenging and incredibly rewarding. The Thrive service is here to help you, whatever your business challenges – whether that be hiring your first staff member, getting to grips with social media, managing your finances, or anything in between.

The needs of a sole trader working from home will be different to those of an SME with premises and staff to manage, and as a business owner, you will have specific strengths as well as areas you would like to improve. 

Having an experienced advisor give you an outside view can be incredibly valuable, whether it’s to work together on a specific challenge, or to simply have someone else on hand to help you see the woods for the trees. 

Businesses will be able to access four modules of support, each three hours long. Typically, this will include a tailored one-to-one session and attendance at several workshops, which will cover a range of business and digital topics, such as:

  • Business planning
  • Pricing products & services
  • Networking skills
  • Digital strategy
  • Marketing
  • Accounting & finances Innovation
  • Steps to Net Zero
  • Websites & SEO
    Plus more…

Delivered by a range of expert, local speakers, these workshop sessions will predominantly be run online so that they are accessible to as many businesses across the region as possible. 

As well as picking up essential skills, they also provide an excellent opportunity to meet like-minded entrepreneurs and make new local contacts.

Who Can Access The Support?

Thrive is available to businesses based in Devon, Plymouth, Torbay, and Somerset. *This service does not cover North Somerset or BANES.

When And How Can I Apply?

The Thrive service is now open and is available until the end of March 2023. So don’t delay, get in touch with us today!

To find out more about the Thrive service and to register for the free support, please visit or call freephone 0800 592 872. 

The Heart of the South West Growth Hub Service for All is receiving up to £781,965 of funding from the England European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020.

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government is the Managing Authority for ERDF. Established by the European Union ERDF funds help local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations.

The accountable body for this programme is Devon County Council, working with contracted business support providers including North Devon + and the Cosmic BIP Consortium.

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