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Scottish Entrepreneurs generate over £64 million turnover in mind blowing 2016 figures for world’s biggest free business accelerator

·       Entrepreneurial Spark launches impressive 2017 Impact Report

·       3,152 jobs created by its entrepreneurs

·       85% of businesses still trading

·       New programme underway to reach even more entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurial Spark Powered by Royal Bank of Scotland launched its annual report today, with an even bigger impact on the UK economy than ever before.

The Impact Report demonstrates beyond doubt that the world’s largest free business accelerator is at the forefront of an ‘entrepreneuring’ revolution and continues to make significantly more entrepreneurs credible, backable and investable every year.

A focus on creating growth mindsets and hands-on enablement by Entrepreneurial Spark with the key support of all its partners in Royal Bank of Scotland, KPMG Enterprise, Dell Technologies and Harper Macleod means the number of businesses supported across the UK has risen by 163% and that Entrepreneurial Spark has now enabled over 1,700 businesses develop, grow and scale-up across the UK.

The impressive figures are reflected across all four nations of the UK – with 2016 seeing hubs now open in England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales - and across all sectors. Crucially the number of jobs created by those businesses supported has risen by a huge 76% on the previous year resulting in a massive 3,152 jobs created, all of which have a positive impact on the UK economy.

In the areas of turnover and investment the figures across the UK are even more impressive. Up by 105.3% the businesses supported by Entrepreneurial Spark have now turned over £176m and secured £151m in investment, a huge 235% rise.

In Scotland, turnover reached a peak of more than £64 million. To date, Entrepreneurial Spark has supported 625 Scottish businesses, with entrepreneurs also securing over £48 million investment and creating 1,047 jobs.

A people-centric and action-orientated approach means businesses that have been through the Entrepreneurial Spark programme have focussed and resilient leaders, and a fantastic chance of growing as a business. 85% of the businesses accelerated are still trading which is more than double the national average.

Entrepreneurial Spark recently embarked on a new model which will build even more people who build even better businesses. This evolved model will provide specialised, bespoke enablement for everyone to small start-ups leaving the kitchen table behind to midweight Fintech entrepreneurs needing a boost and on up to well established businesses wishing to scale-up and grow into international markets.

Lucy-Rose Walker, Entrepreneurial Spark CEO, said: “We’ve given this Impact Report the title ‘Blow Your Mind’ and it’s not hard to see why. The stats are truly mind-blowing and we’ve enabled our entrepreneurs to create real jobs, huge turnover and significant investment via our focus on developing their entrepreneurial mindsets and behaviours. Our entrepreneurs have turned over £176m, so it is clear what an impact we are having on the UK economy.

“Our vision is to create positive social change by giving people the chance to grow and create jobs, and value in the economy. It’s really gratifying to see that those entrepreneurs have now created 3,152 jobs across the UK, all of them creating social change by contributing to their communities and local economies.

“Our partnership with Royal Bank of Scotland is such a powerful one and enables us to give hands-on practical help to start-ups of every kind, from that first spark of an idea, right up to bigger businesses needing to scale and grow. We also love working with KPMG, Dell Technologies and Harper Macleod because as the experts in what they do they offer so much to our entrepreneurs.

“We have another exciting year ahead as we bring our entrepreneuring revolution to London with our 13th hub and launch the first free, dedicated fintech accelerator in Scotland. It’s going to be another mind-blowing year.”

Alison Rose, CEO of Commercial and Private Banking for Royal Bank of Scotland said: “The Impact Report shows that the support our free accelerators are giving to entrepreneurs is working, enabling them to create jobs across the UK, secure millions of pounds of investment and support their local economies. Our hubs are now in every nation of the UK, in many major cities and we are excited to be opening a London hub later this year.”

Nicola Sturgeon, First Minister of Scotland, said: “The entrepreneurial buzz around RBS’s HQ when I helped open the new entrepreneurial hub in 2016 was phenomenal and really signalled a change in the way the bank is being run. I am delighted that the bank’s partnership with Entrepreneurial Spark continues to go from strength to strength and more and more entrepreneurs are creating great businesses as a result. It is vital for the economy that start-up businesses are given all the support they need to succeed and the combination of the bank’s networks and connections and Entrepreneurial Spark’s know-how is a powerful mix.” 

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