Entrepreneurs across the region of West Yorkshire are poised to reap the rewards of a new multimillion-pound fund aimed at assisting them in launching services and products to be sold worldwide. The Mayor of West Yorkshire’s £6 million fund for entrepreneurs has entered its third round of support, which was officially launched today, July 6.

The program’s objective is to identify the most talented and innovative minds in the region, nurture their entrepreneurial skills, and transform their ideas into global enterprises. Seventy-five individuals with creative minds will have access to nine months of tailored support, coaching, and mentoring. This opportunity will enable them to develop fresh business concepts and acquire the necessary skills to become successful entrepreneurs.

Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin, said; “I’m committed to providing opportunities for everyone in West Yorkshire to pursue their goals, whatever their circumstances.

“We have already helped thousands giving them the skills they need to start and run their own successful business.

“Now, we will focus on the best and the brightest minds in the region, catapulting them to the next level and turning their entrepreneurial ideas into the global businesses of the future.

“Our talented entrepreneurs are absolutely central to our vision for a stronger, brighter West Yorkshire.”

Cllr Shabir Pandor, Leader of Kirklees Council and Chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority Business, Economy and Innovation Committee, said; “I’m delighted we’re able to provide support of this quality to individuals and businesses who have the potential to drive forward their innovative ideas.

“Equipping the entrepreneurs of West Yorkshire with the skills they need to succeed will not just improve their personal circumstances. It will boost our regional economy through the creation of more high-skilled jobs and greater inward investment.

“We’re building a stronger, brighter West Yorkshire where everyone can reach their full potential, and that includes our brilliant entrepreneurs with local solutions to global challenges”

The West Yorkshire Combined Authority will deliver this support in collaboration with a twelve-member strong group comprising businesses and learning organisations from across the region. Nexus and the University of Leeds will lead the group, utilising their world-class facilities and expertise to incubate the next generation of business leaders and entrepreneurs. Their focus will be on addressing regional, national, and global challenges that lie ahead.

This program builds upon the success of its two previous support packages, which aided over 2,000 individuals in developing and pursuing their ideas. The first package supported individuals in transforming their ideas and hobbies into fully established businesses, while the second package helped entrepreneurs concentrate on scaling up their start-ups. Notably, 58% of participants were women, 38% belonged to an ethnic minority, and 10% identified as having a disability.

The Mayor is currently seeking entrepreneurs with aspirations for rapid growth, aiming to enhance their resilience, expand their skills, and establish businesses capable of making a global impact.

Dr Martin Stow, Pro Vice-Chancellor: Business Engagement and Enterprise at the University of Leeds, said; “We’re thrilled to be launching this programme, an initiative that demonstrates our firm commitment to making a positive difference to our region.

“The programme is a fantastic opportunity for entrepreneurs seeking to accelerate the start of their innovation-based, purpose-driven new ventures by drawing upon the wealth of knowledge and experience of successful entrepreneurs and enterprises.

“We’re excited to be working with local communities and their leaders to ensure this initiative is accessible to as broad a range of people as possible and are keen to work with more as we move forward.

“Nexus and the University of Leeds are immensely proud to be leading this consortium, inspiring entrepreneurs to achieve their business ambitions and build a better tomorrow.”

For more information or to apply for the Enterprise West Yorkshire program, please visit www.the-lep.com/innovative-entrepreneurs.