Sheffield business body seeks agency

A body in Sheffield that aims to encourage people to start their own businesses is seeking a PR agency to help promote entrepreneurship in the least privileged parts of the city.

'BIG - Make it Your Business' was this week viewing presentations from four agencies and is expected to make an announcement about the winner next week.

The BIG programme was developed because the city has traditionally depended on major employers in traditional sectors, leading to what BIG calls an 'employed culture' rather than one of enterprise and opportunity.

Along with other such enterprise initiatives across the country, BIG has received extra funds to take it through to the next comprehensive spending review in 2010-11.

The funds for year four that have just been released are worth £6.2m to Sheffield, resulting in a £24.4m total budget overall.

So far BIG has provided help to 200 people interested in starting their own business, via its 'neighbourhood enterprise champions'.

These, along with six business advisers, offer local residents and businesses free, personalised support from within the community.

More than 250 people have also entered the 'BIG Idea' competition, which invited Sheffield residents to submit their business ideas to pitch for up to £100,000 of investment from a group of local 'business angels'.

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