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Jul 27, 2022 #Business

Founder of Gateshead-based Klee’s Kitchen among more than 1,600 young entrepreneurs helped by the partnership to date

Leading mid-market private equity firm LDC has more than doubled its commitment to The Prince’s Trust to help young people across the UK to create the leading businesses of the future.

A new five year expanded nationwide partnership with The Prince’s Trust will help up to 10,000 additional young people to start, sustain and grow their own business through an extension of the Enterprise programme. The partnership makes LDC the leading corporate supporter of young entrepreneurs at The Prince’s Trust.

LDC first partnered with The Prince’s Trust in 2019 to support its Enterprise programme, which equips young people with the confidence, skills and funding to launch their own businesses. The Backing Youth Ambition partnership has so far helped more than 1,600 young people to start their own business and has contributed towards a more diverse group of future business leaders; a quarter of the young entrepreneurs identify as non-white and more than half identify as female.

In addition to the financial contribution made by LDC over the last three years, LDC employees have provided practical support for young people across the UK by volunteering. This includes the development and delivery of a specialist investment workshop, which gave young entrepreneurs a crash course in the variety of options that are available to fund business growth.

LDC employees also raised additional funds individually by participating in the charity’s ‘Future Steps’ and ‘Brilliant Breakfast’ initiatives. To celebrate some of the inspiring entrepreneurs supported by the Enterprise programme, LDC hosted a marketplace at a recent company-wide meeting. The marketplace invited six young entrepreneurs to set up market stalls on the day to sell products and tell their story.

LDC’s work with The Prince’s Trust has helped the charity to support aspiring young entrepreneurs through the particular challenges of the last two years. Kayleigh Taylor, from Wallsend, North Tyneside, began to turn her dream of running a business into a reality when she approached The Prince’s Trust in 2020 for support to develop her healthy meal prep delivery service, Klee’s Kitchen.

Kayleigh, who suffers from ADHD and left home during her final year of school, started cooking to escape the challenges of everyday life. With the help of The Prince’s Trust, Klee’s Kitchen has now moved into a permanent home in Gateshead and employs one full-time member of staff, two full-time apprentices and four delivery drivers. The business’ progress and Kayleigh’s story earnt her the Enterprise Award at The Prince’s Trust Awards earlier this year.

Toby Rougier, Chief Executive of LDC, said: “We’ve been helping management teams to achieve their ambitions for more than 40 years. By giving young entrepreneurs the tools they need to get started today, we are supporting the world-class businesses of the future. Our work with The Prince’s Trust aligns perfectly with this mission and our heritage.

“More than doubling our commitment over the next five years will support our efforts and ensure we continue to make a significant contribution to societies and communities across the UK.”

Jonathan Townsend, UK Chief Executive of The Prince’s Trust said: “We are delighted that LDC’s new commitment will enable even more young people to continue their self-employment journey through The Prince’s Trust Enterprise programme.  LDC’s support over the last three years has helped The Trust to support young entrepreneurs with the mentorship, guidance and funding to grow and sustain a business idea, through such a challenging time for businesses of every size. I am excited for what we can achieve through this partnership over the course of the next five years.”

Building on a long heritage of supporting good causes across the UK, LDC’s five-year charity commitment will also enable LDC’s employees in all of its regional offices to increase their support for local causes important to their communities and will include activities such as the LDC Annual Charity Quiz which takes place in November.

By jrmoll

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