People, Places, Business

Enterprising Neath Port Talbot

Enterprising Neath Port Talbot

Neath Port Talbot Council’s Enterprise Club continues to gain popularity with people looking for help to become their own boss. Since launching the Club in 2011, over 300 people have benefited from self-employment advice with a third of these going on to start a business.

Gemma Barrett set up Gemma's Plumbing and Heating Services with the support of Neath Port Talbot Council's Enterprise Club

The Club is held monthly at Sandfields Business Centre and is open to anyone who is interested in becoming self-employed. Held in an informal environment, attendees can speak to a number of professionals about start-up grants, training courses, marketing, business banking and accounting issues. They also receive their own business start-up pack containing useful contact details and websites, along with details of other organisations that can offer further support.

Attendees are also provided with information on the Council’s Innov8 grant of up to £1,000 that aims to help with initial start-up costs such as marketing, stock and overheads.

Enterprise Club - Ceri Williams

Successful start-ups receive ongoing support from the Council’s Enterprise Development Officer including business planning, commercial property search, mentoring and identifying further funding opportunities.

Ceri Rees and Gemma Barrett attended the Enterprise Club and are now running their own businesses.

Gemma set up Gemma's Plumbing & Heating Services and Ceri runs his company CS Wales Ltd. from Sandfields Business Centre, providing Health & Safety consultancy and training services.

Ceri set up his business 'S C Cymru Cyf / C S Wales Ltd' after accepting voluntary redundancy and moved to the Centre in early 2014. S C Cymru primarily provides bilingual health & safety consultancy and training services to small and medium sized organisations. The business also provides a Welsh language translation service and adult dyslexia assessment and support.

 He said: “I only found out about the Centre when I attended one of the Enterprise Clubs. The help and support I received gave me the confidence to set up my own business. There are a lot of likeminded tenants in the Centre to network with, and I have built business relationships with several companies based at the Centre.”

 “I can make use of the Centre’s facilities, such as the conference rooms and communal areas to meet with customers and suppliers. This has helped to maintain a professional image of my business. It is also reassuring to know that there is ongoing support available from the Council’s Business Development Team located on-site.”

The entrepreneurial spirit at the business centre has had quite a positive effect on Ceri. Last month he turned his love of music into another business opportunity. He now also provides mobile DJ services for parties, events & celebrations, under the name of 'DJ Moylsey’.

Gemma said: “I first signed up with the Enterprise Club when I was made redundant from my job as a safe gas engineer. I was interested in becoming a self-employed plumber but wasn’t sure where to start. The Club helped me with things like business planning and cash flow and profit & loss projections.”

“Within a few months of attending the Enterprise Club and with the help of the Council’s Innov8 start-up grant I was able to set up my own plumbing and heating business. It has become so successful that I am now looking to take on an apprentice through the Jobs Growth Wales scheme.”

Interested in starting your own business? Contact Kevin Lugg on 01639 765695 or k.lugg@npt.gov.uk to book a place at one of the clubs.