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Spotlight On Mentors’ & NEDs’ Role In Driving Scale-Up Agenda At Free Event


Oct 23, 2018

The positive impact that non-executive directors and business mentors can have on helping North East firms realise their scale-up ambitions will be in the spotlight at a free event taking place next week.

The Scaling Your Business Through Mentors and Non-Executive Directors seminar is designed to give business owners an in-depth insight into how experienced personnel can help them progress their expansion plans more quickly and successfully.

Hosted by NEL Fund Managers, Experience Bank and the North East LEP’s Growth through Mentoring Programme, the event will feature speakers who have grown or are growing their businesses with the help of external expertise, including Mel O’Connor of South Shields-based technology firm Okkulo.

The breakfast event will run between 830am and 1030am on Tuesday 20 November at UNW LLP’s office on Saint James’ Boulevard in Newcastle.

NEL Fund Managers is responsible for investing two of the five funds which make up the £120m North East Fund Supported By The European Regional Development Fund – the £18m North East Growth Capital Fund and the £9m North East Small Loan Fund – and will be sharing information at the event on the funding and support available to help North East firms realise their scale-up ambitions.

Overseen by an independent advisory board appointed from its membership, The Experience Bank helps to facilitate introductions for business owners and entrepreneurs to experienced non-executive directors.

Dr Yvonne Gale, chief executive at NEL Fund Managers, says: “We’ve invested in dozens of North East businesses where the knowledge and advice of a mentor or non-executive director has had a huge impact on both the pace and breadth of their subsequent growth.

“The North East has a strong community of experienced executives who have come across and found solutions to pretty much every challenge that today’s entrepreneurs could face, and who are enthusiastic about sharing what they’ve learned over their decades in business.

“Our event aims to help owner/managers identify how to find the right mentor for their particular needs, integrate their knowledge into their operations and benefit from their experience, and we’re keen to get as many of them along to our event as we can.”

Colin Bell, Business Growth Director at the North East LEP, adds: “The business community in the North East is defined by its willingness to collaborate and share best practice.

“Some of our fastest growing companies have benefited from the support of a mentor and many of those organisations are now giving back to the next generation of scaling businesses.

“There is a huge amount of support available for growing businesses in our region and working with a mentor can be one of the most impactful. It can change the direction of a company and set it on the right path for growth.”

Peter Neal, Head of UNW Strategic Talent and a member of The Experience Bank advisory board, says: “The Experience Bank is a peer-reviewed, proprietary network of experienced entrepreneurs and business leaders who are committed to sharing their knowledge and expertise.

“The Experience Bank is driven by a passion for the region, a passion to do something different and to make a difference. It’s all about getting talented people to help growing companies.”

To reserve a place at the Scaling Your Business Through Mentors and Non-Executive Directors seminar, visit www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/scaling-your-business-through-mentors-and-non-executive-directors-tickets-52157379125