Exciting Funding Boost: Dorset LEP & Focused For Business Team Up

Dorset LEP & Focused For Business Team Up banner

If you’re a startup or small business in Dorset looking to raise investment, help is at hand! Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and Focused For Business have joined forces on an exciting initiative to help Dorset-based businesses secure vital funding to grow their businesses.

Dorset LEP has agreed to generously fund two-thirds of the cost for eligible local businesses to join Focused For Business’ renowned Funding Accelerator programme. This means more Dorset companies can access excellent advice and support in their journey to securing investment for their business.

A Limited Window of Opportunity 

But you’ll need to act fast – funded places on the Accelerator are limited. Dorset LEP will sponsor a total of 10 businesses on a first come, first served basis. Subject to eligibility and availability, it is anticipated that 5 businesses will be invited to participate in the September 2024 cohort, and another 5 in the January 2025 intake.

By heavily subsidising two-thirds of the £3,000 programme fee per business, this initiative makes the Funding Accelerator programme much more accessible to early-stage businesses. Successful applicants will only need to cover the remaining £1,000 + VAT themselves.

Getting Investment for Your Business: A Powerful Accelerator

Focused For Business’ flagship Funding Accelerator is a proven programme that supports startups and businesses in securing equity investment in just 90 days. The programme is designed for businesses raising their first or second round of equity funding, and who are typically looking to raise between £100,000 and £1 million. 

Over three one-month sprints, Funding Accelerator equips companies with everything they need to run an effective funding campaign:

  1. Preparing and gaining feedback on all their investment documents (including pitch, financial forecast and valuation)
  2. Developing and running a funding campaign (including identifying the right investors, providing an investor “hit list” and pitching to investors)
  3. Selecting investors, negotiating the terms based on evidence and banking the cash!

To be eligible to join Funding Accelerator businesses need to have developed a product or service and have either launched, or be about to launch, this. It isn’t always necessary for the business to be revenue generating, or to be profitable. However, the business owners must be willing to sell equity (shares) in their business in exchange for investors’ cash.  

Funding Accelerator’s results speak for themselves – 50% of Funding Accelerator participants have successfully raised investment, over £22 million has been raised by graduates of the programme and over £10 million in funding was raised in 2023, despite the challenging market conditions. 

Levelling the Playing Field

Let’s face it – all the research shows – when it comes to getting investment for startups, businesses based outside of London can face an uphill battle. But this partnership between Dorset LEP and Focused For Business is a fantastic step towards levelling that playing field for Dorset entrepreneurs.

“This partnership with Dorset LEP represents an amazing opportunity for local startups and businesses to access top-tier investment readiness support,” said Hatty Fawcett, Founder of Focused For Business. “We’re thrilled to be working together with Dorset LEP to open more doors for Dorset’s entrepreneurial talent, so they get the investment their businesses need.

Shelley Collins-Trevett, Dorset LEP added:

This partnership with Dorset LEP represents an amazing opportunity for local startups and businesses to access top-tier investment readiness support,” said Hatty Fawcett, Founder of Focused For Business. “We’re thrilled to be working together with Dorset LEP to open more doors for Dorset’s entrepreneurial talent, so they get the investment their businesses need.

Take the Next Step

Does this sound like the funding boost your business needs to reach its next set of milestones? Join the free, online Funding Strategy Workshop to see if your business is eligible for this subsidy, and kickstart your investment journey today.

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