A “refreshed approach” to building a prosperous Wigan borough has been backed by local businesses.
Wigan Council has unveiled its new ‘Deal for Business’ – a voluntary agreement between the authority and local businesses which signifies a shared commitment to supporting local economic growth.
Originally launched in 2015, the deal has been refreshed with the local Business Consortium co-designing the new enhanced offer.
Among those lending their support to the initiative is Caeryn Collins, from Golborne school uniform and workwear supplier Impressions.
Caeryn Collins, who was involved in the process which created the new Deal for Business, said: “Our values are really closely aligned to those with the criteria set out in the new Deal for Business. For instance, we’re an ethical company, we support our staff and local communities, we buy and support other local businesses, and since we’ve adopted that set of values our turnover has increased significantly.
She added: “Many businesses think that being a green business, or paying your staff a living wage or employing apprentices is something that will be a cost to them but it’s actually a huge benefit.”
Understaning the needs of local businesses
Cllr David Molyneux, leader of the council, said: “As part of the borough’s community wealth building ambitions, we began working closely with the Business Consortium to understand their needs and priorities as part of the borough’s recovery plan and how we can all work together to support our economy.
“The refresh was a result of that partnership work and encourages collaboration, identifies local supply chain opportunities, and the important contribution local businesses have to making our borough a great place to live and work. We’re proud to be launching something that’s been a true joint effort.”
The scheme is based on an informal agreement in which the council and local businesses each have pledges to support each other and work together to create an economy which is successful and sustainable.
What does the new Deal for Businesses include?
A number of new features are included in the offer including a mentoring service and an online directory which will allow businesses to search for others that have the same values, opening opportunities to connect, source and collaborate with local suppliers.
The council is also inviting more local businesses to join the business consortium and has urged them to register interest via the council’s website with the business engagement team on hand and ready to welcome new partners.
New gold, silver and bronze membership levels will be awarded to each business and members will receive a toolkit of graphics they can use to share good news stories, shout about their achievements and connect to each other online.
The refreshed offer is also underpinned by the council’s community wealth building work which aims to tackle economic inequality and create a fairer borough with greater opportunities for all.
Cllr Keith Cunliffe, deputy leader, added: “The new deal is a brilliant example of community wealth building – supporting the local economy to retain wealth in the borough and ensure benefits for local people.
“We’re asking all businesses that engage with us to sign up to The Deal for Business and embrace our ambitions for a prosperous and competitive Wigan.”
To sign up or to register your interest in becoming part of the Business Consortium please visit The Deal for Business.
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