Local business given lifeline thanks to Worcestershire County Council grant

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An event management company in Worcester has received £15,000 from Worcestershire County Council’s Here2Help Business Programme.

The programme was set up to help businesses recover, adapt and develop during the COVID-19 pandemic. So far, the County Council has approved and contracted £1.4 million funding to businesses across the county.

Amongst these businesses is Autograph Events, which was decimated after losing every single one of of its bookings for the whole of 2020 within just a few weeks.

To save the business, the team had to diversify and pivot their business model completely by moving all services online, which required essential funding.

After reaching out to Worcestershire County Council, the business was awarded two grants totalling £15,000 which allowed them to support the development of the business and safeguard jobs. They have also been able to hire a local graduate, who is now managing the online events full-time.

Councillor Ken Pollock, Worcestershire County Council’s Cabinet Member with Responsibility for the Economy and Infrastructure, said: “Our Here2Help Programme continues to support businesses across Worcestershire who are incredibly valued and important to our economy.

“Autograph Events is a great example of how we can work with local businesses to ensure they receive the support they need to adapt and grow despite such challenging circumstances.”

Victoria Jenkins-Leigh, Managing Director of Autograph Events, said: “The Here2Help Business Programme has been essential in helping us safeguard the business. In the past two months, we’ve won three new clients and we wouldn’t have achieved this without the support.

“We’ve also been able to employ additional staff to manage the growth of the business and focus on the new digital world that we find ourselves in.”

Based in Worcester, Autograph Events is an events company with extensive experience in planning and delivering a range of B2B events for clients both nationally and internationally.

Autograph Events prides itself on having a deep understanding of the hospitality and travel industry, with an aim to help businesses minimise costs and save time when planning events, with state-of-the-art technologies and a global network.

Worcestershire County Council’s Graduate Development grant was set up in response to the pandemic to improve business productivity and increase local employment opportunities. The grant covers 50% of the graduate’s salary costs for a one-year period, up to a maximum of £10,000 with the remaining 50% to be provided by the SME. As result of this, the County Council has approved and contracted 38 new graduate positions.

Eligibility criteria applies. Find out more about the Here2Help Business Programme here: www.worcestershire.gov.uk/here2helpbusiness