As a winner in the latest round of funding from the NatWest Skills and Opportunities Fund, the Let’s Do Business Group is delighted to announce that it now has funding to launch its Business Builder Project for budding entrepreneurs in Hastings, Eastbourne and all places in between.

Shortlisted from 590 applicants in the UK and as one of only two South East community organisations to benefit from a share of £1 million, the Let’s Do Business Group will use the grant to offer an innovative series of start-up workshops, mentoring support, online training and specialist advice.

Set up in 2015, the NatWest Skills and Opportunities Fund helps to create opportunities for people in disadvantaged communities to gain qualifications, financial capability and entrepreneur skills or start a business. Tim Boag, chair of NatWest’s south east regional board, said: “Since we launched the fund two years ago, the projects we’ve funded across the South East have so far made a positive difference to more than 1,600 people, including 23 new business start-ups, getting 80 people into employment and another 234 achieve professional qualifications.”

Sean Dennis, deputy chief executive of Let’s Do Business Group, said: “We are absolutely thrilled at receiving this award and would like to thank NatWest for choosing us. Research shows if you take advice and support you are far more likely to not only start, but to grow more successfully. This programme really allows us to provide a far greater level and depth of support than we could otherwise do, inspiring individuals to turn business ideas into a reality.”

This project will enable the Let’s Do Business Group to assist up to 60 residents of Hastings, Rother and Eastbourne with realising their dream business potential. Over the next 12 months, there will be a number of opportunities for budding entrepreneurs to get involved and benefit from the project, with the first round of project qualifying half day workshops starting this October. The second round of workshops will run in the New Year and more details will be announced as they become available.

Sean added: “With our key partners, we really look forward to offering a wide range of workshops, online training, mentoring and specialist advice which will give successful applicants all the tools they need to develop their business idea and launch a viable business. Applicants will have their Business Plans assessed by business experts in the New Year, with winners receiving a cash prize towards their set up costs, plus further opportunities for all to access grants, other funding sources and the Group’s wider advice and support services.

St Leonards-on-Sea based Let’s Do Business Group is a leading business support organisation across the South East, with a long and successful track record of helping start-ups, SMEs and local entrepreneurs start, grow and prosper. Most recent success stories include popular local restaurant Half Man Half Burger, new specialist running shop Core Running, and Sussex fashion brand Boom Boom the Label.

For more information on the Business Builder Project, please call 0844 4152272 or visit our website www.letsdobusinessgroup.co.uk/bizbuilder.