When you think of big business you may think of major cities like Manchester and Liverpool, but you shouldn't be overlooking the town of Wigan. It's conveniently located between these two major cities, a huge reason Wigan business is working so well. Wigan is the second most populated local authority in Greater Manchester with around 318,700 people so their is plenty of business to make. Train and bus links are plentiful so it's super easy getting in and out. “Wigan Borough is well connected, we’ve got a passionate and loyal workforce and we’ve got a lot to offer people who come to live here, particularly our great schools and impressive green, open spaces,” said Councillor David Molynuex, Deputy Leader of Wigan Council and Portfolio Cabinet member for Regeneration.
Wigan Council is committed to support firms in the borough that forms part of "The Deal", a initiative that they launched last year to achieve savings through pushing efficiency. The Council's Business Engagement Team is providing free and independent access to a full range of support services, plus a dedicated officer is assigned to provide long term support and continuity.
“The council’s dedicated Business Engagement Team provides a fantastic platform for us to grow the local economy. We can support the needs of businesses already here and help to attract other companies to move here and be part of our story. As someone who runs a business that dates back as far as 1926, I’m hugely proud of our borough but I don’t want us to rest on our laurels. I’m very keen that every business gets access to the support it needs. By boosting local businesses, we’ll see growth in jobs and better prospects for everyone,” said Waterfield’s Chairman and chair of the Wigan Forward Board, Richard Waterfield.
Below the Business Engagement Team have answered some common questions.
What support can you offer in terms of grants, funding and financial advice?
Wigan Council offers a free service to align initial business ideas to solutions and advice; including potential funding opportunities that are available to Wigan Borough businesses. Wigan has been successful over the years in securing over £100m of external funding to support the growth and prosperity of Wigan. The team will work with Greater Manchester partners to help businesses at each stage of the application process.
How do I get in touch and will you come out to see me?
We are committed to our ‘Open for Business’ approach and so can be reached through email firstname.lastname@example.org, ring us on 01942 489190 or visit the Council’s website www.wigan.gov.uk/businessengagement. Your enquiry will be forwarded to a member of the Business Engagement Team who will contact you directly to make an appointment to meet you at your premises.
Can you help me to market my business better?
Marketing and communications through traditional and creative media are the foundations to helping a business succeed. We will support businesses to access free support to help them in promoting their businesses, developing marketing strategies and looking at new ways to do business.
I need to find bigger and better premises, can you help?
Wigan Council in partnership with Greater Manchester Growth Company offer a Property Finder service which is free of charge. The service provides a comprehensive list of commercial land and premises within the Wigan Borough, covering both council owned and privately owned land and premises.
I want to move my business to Wigan, how can you help?
We will work on a one-to-one basis offering advice on land and premises availability, potential investment opportunities, recruitment requirements and lots more. Wigan has a lot to offer and we are committed to improving economic opportunities to become a location of choice for investment.
I’m starting a new business, is there any funding available?
There is support available for new businesses. This may not always be in the form of grant assistance but through start up loans for eligible clients. Wigan Council works with partners across the borough to ensure that any new business receives one-to-one tailored support. If you are interested in starting a new business then contact one of the business engagement team who will be happy to help.
Be sure to check the "best business investment film ever made” video above that has been created to launch 'Wigan Works' to increase investment and jobs int he borough. Also checkout www.wiganworks.com for more information.