The NMD Business Growth and Tender for Growth programmes are creating jobs every week, according to new figures released. In the 18 months since their launch, the local business support programmes facilitated by Newry, Mourne and Down District Council have helped to create over 78 new jobs for the area - averaging more than one new role each week.
The programmes are part funded by Invest Northern Ireland and the European Regional Development Fund under the Investment for Growth & Jobs Northern Ireland (2014 -2020) programme.
Participants in the programme are able to avail of one-to-one mentoring from leading experts, who help guide them and their business through unprecedented times, as well as learning new skills in financial management, cross-border sales and maximising your chances of winning tenders. As a result, many businesses have been able to not only grow their business, but grow their workforce.
Despite the impact of recent lockdowns over the last 12 months, NMD Business has continued to provide SMEs with support packages in response to challenges created by the pandemic. This has resulted in ongoing growth for the business and the creation of 78 new job roles, as well as helping 465 businesses involved in the programme to navigate an unprecedented economic environment.
Eddie Curran from Pro-Performance Nutrition completed the programme in 2020 and has already recruited a full-time driver for his business. He said:
“The guidance I received and the lessons I learned throughout the programmes were crucial in the survival of our business. It helped us focus on what was key for our growth. The mentoring allowed us to develop a strategic plan which looked at improving our services and team, to achieve more growth across our target markets. Despite the pandemic and the issues the economy is facing, we are in a good place.
“Enhancing my skillset was obviously a vital part of our success in the programmes, but the confidence I gained in myself helped boost the direction of the business and enabled me to grow our team. It’s hard to believe that this support is free, so I would urge any business in Newry, Mourne and Down to register as soon as possible. You never know where it might take you!”
Speaking on the success of the business support programme, Councillor Laura Devlin, Chair of Newry, Mourne and Down District Council added:
“As a council we want to see the success of local businesses, who can create jobs and compete in local and international markets. That is why the NMD Business Growth and Tender for Growth programmes are important elements of our work, where we can support SMEs and start-ups to develop their skills and grow their business.
“It is great to see that the programme is a success, with so many of the hundreds who have taken part seeing growth and expansion of their businesses in the last 18 months. It is particularly exciting to see 78 new jobs created, one each week since the programme launched, and we hope to see even more in the coming months."
For more information or to find out if your business is eligible for the programme, visit www.nmdbusiness.org/growing-your-business .