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Celebrating enterprise

Published: 23/06/2014

An event celebrating local enterprise, hosted by Communities First at Coleg Cambria has marked the success of the Flintshire Business Entrepreneurship Networks (BEN) Enterprise Club. The 18 month old club helps people start their own business, gives advice on growing a business idea and offers a mentoring programme with leaders of local companies via regular member meetings. The Flintshire BEN project also organises a Dragons’ Den style event for budding entrepreneurs. The morning programme on Friday 6 June featured inspirational speakers who gave an overview of enterprise and entrepreneurship. Local Assembly Members, MPs, community leaders and business champions joined together to congratulate the club’s members and staff on an encouraging start to the project. Success stories include: Angie Atherton Autism Support, a business that supports families with children and young adults with autism. Angie has been mentored by Christine Sheibani from Deeside-based Comtek and launched her business earlier this year. Design graduates Jonathan Ecroyd and James Clark who set up Mr J Designs after the business partners attended the very first Dragons’ Den event in November 2012. They are receiving support from Paul Maddocks ex-owner of Parkway Telecom and Leyla Edwards, CEO of KK Fine Foods. Bluepointseo founded by David James. The company drives traffic to websites so clients gain more custom; whether it be in sales of products, services or lead generation. David attends regular meetings of the enterprise club and receives mentor support from Adam Butler of Easy Online Recruitment. Wayne Guest who is a qualified plumber, after he was made redundant he began attending the club. He has recently launched his own business, WD Guest Heating & Plumbing. He has taken courses outside of the club to obtain certificates in health and safety and he is a champion of the programme. All four businesses also receive the support of the Business Wales Start-Up Programme. Councillor Aaron Shotton, Leader of Flintshire County Council said: “We are delighted the Flintshire Enterprise Club has been so successful. The opportunities and mentoring support offered are fantastic – where else would you find inspiring business leaders giving local people encouragement. The benefits of this scheme to Flintshire’s economy are huge and I hope the club will go from strength to strength. The BEN project is the brain child of Askar Sheibani, who is the Comtek Group CEO. Sheibani, who is also the Entrepreneurship Champion for Wales, stated: “I am immensely proud of all that the Flintshire BEN has achieved over the last 18 months; the new businesses have taken advice and guidance from the more experienced entrepreneurs and, as a result, have seen their businesses go from strength to strength. Flintshire BENs Enterprise Club is a testament to the value of investing in your local community and I’m thrilled to see Flintshire doing its bit for Britain’s economy.” Flintshire BENs Enterprise Club is run by Communities First, part of Flintshire County Councils Regeneration Service and offers help and advice to entrepreneurs on business start-ups. It is free to join and meets every other Friday at 10am at John Summers Community Campus. For more information contact Beverly Moseley at Communities First on 01244 846090. Photo caption 1: Mr J Designs founders Jonathan Ecroyd and James Clark with one of their designs. Photo caption 2: Angie Atherton of Angie Atherton Autism Support speaking at the celebration event. Photo caption 3: Members of the Flintshire Enterprise Club receiving recognition for their participation for the last 18 months.