News - 12 December 2014

Aston Programme for Small Business Growth

Join a group of like-minded business owners to participate in a practical growth programme that will help you build confidence in your leadership, plan for the growth of your business, and build a unique network of contacts.  The programme runs from February to June 2015 and participation is completely free of charge. 

Designed specifically for small businesses leaders, the Aston Programme for Small Business Growth is a free programme for businesses in the West Midlands.  Delivered by the team that runs the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses programme, the Aston Programme provides leadership and management education for small business leaders wanting to grow their businesses.  In a series of workshops supplemented by one-to-one support the programme addresses a comprehensive range of issues faced by growing SMEs and culminates in the development of your own Plan for Growth for your business.  It gives you the tools and the knowledge to implement your growth strategy, and puts you at the heart of a network of growth businesses.  The programme also includes pitching workshops that will help you develop an investment pitch, putting you in a position to approach external funders. 

Key Benefits

  • Gain the confidence to grow your business
  • Use your financial information more effectively to make strategic decisions
  • Create and enhance valuable business networks
  • Learn from the experiences of high growth businesses
  • Organise your ideas into a strategic Plan for Growth
  • Learn about external finance options suitable for your business


To be eligible for the Aston Programme you need to be the leader of a small business or social enterprise and have the desire and drive to grow your business.  The business needs to:

  • Be scalable and have the ambition and opportunities for growth
  • Be a registered business located in the West Midlands
  • Be trading and be able to provide evidence of trading revenue (not a start-up)
  • Have at least one FTE employee
  • Meet the De Minimus State Aid criteria (no more than 200,000 Euro State Aid in the last 3 years)

Key Dates

  • Breakfast Briefing in Birmingham – Wednesday 17th December 2014
  • Breakfast Briefing in Wolverhampton – Friday 19th December 2014
  • Application Surgery Event in Birmingham – Wednesday 7th January 2015
  • Deadline for Applications – Monday 12th January 2015
  • Selection Interviews – Tuesday 3rd February 2015
  • Workshops – February to June 2015

The programme is particularly suitable for businesses that would like to get into a position to seek external finance for growth.

The Aston Programme for Small Business Growth is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund.

Contact or phone 0121 204 4555

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