12-Nov-2021

Huntingdonshire District Council (HDC) is launching a new grant scheme available for the district's businesses, providing £2,000 to aid with the digitisation of each successful business.

To apply for the District Council's Digital Business Grant scheme, businesses will be invited to attend a Digitisation Workshop that HDC is organising and running alongside three partner organisations. Attendance as one of the workshops is a mandatory first step in applying for a digital business grant and will provide a platform for local businesses to make the most effective use of the grant that they receive.

The adoption and utilisation of digital technologies has become increasingly important to the ongoing growth of businesses. Whether you wish to improve efficiencies and performance, increase your customer reach or implement a new digital communications strategy, then this scheme is designed to support the growth of your business.

Workshops are scheduled for Tuesday 23 November 2021; Tuesday 25 January 2022 and Tuesday 22 February 2022. Upon completion of the workshop, attendees will be invited to apply for a grant. The itinerary for the event includes input from our partners:

  • Cambridgeshire-based marketing agency, Sookio, will be presenting to businesses and providing expertise and guidance regarding digital marketing

  • Innovate UK will be providing example case studies about how local businesses can look to digitise, highlighting what can and cannot be successful

  • Growth Works will be presenting additional grants where businesses may wish to match their digital grant to achieve more for their money.

Executive Leader of the Council, Councillor Ryan Fuller, said: "In response to the pandemic, we have been looking at the many different ways in which we can support local businesses and digitisation support is something that we can provide through this scheme that will help businesses to prepare and embrace the future growth within our thriving local economy.

"A key aspect of our Digital Business Grant scheme is offering the right support through the strong relationships that we have built with partners for local businesses to have access to expert advice and gain the knowledge to make the most of the grant funding that they could receive."

Director of Sookio, Sue Keogh, said: "We love working with business owners to share helpful, practical and jargon-free advice which they can put to good use straight away to get better results from their marketing activity. In these workshops we'll show businesses in Hunts how to become more strategic with their marketing, helping them decide where to focus their efforts and saving them time and money along the way."

Lead Innovation and Growth Specialist of Innovate UK, Simon Atack, said: "We are delighted to see the launch of the new digital grant scheme which will provide essential support in key development areas for organisations. We're very much looking forward to connecting with local businesses during the workshops to discuss and share how digitisation in its many forms can be of support in developing innovation and growth plans."

Strategic Lead of the Growth Works Growth Coaching service, Bev Hurley, said: "Enabling businesses to embrace digital is an exciting and very necessary step in supporting businesses in Huntingdonshire to succeed and thrive, but business sustainability and growth can be challenging to achieve. We are delighted to support the scheme and help businesses to identify digital and other solutions that can unlock their potential, and provide further financial opportunities so they can access the expertise and equipment they need."

More information on Huntingdonshire District Council’s new Digital Business Grant scheme can be found by visiting the Digital Grant page.

Sign up for the first Digitisation Workshop by visiting Eventbrite. There is a maximum of 100 Digital Grants available through this scheme and once the funds have been exhausted the scheme will close.

The scheme has been designed and created by the District Council utilising funding from the Government’s Additional Restrictions Grant schemes. Following the successful distribution of £5.1 million in the previous two rounds, the District Council was awarded a third tranche of funding to distribute by March 2022 for the support of local businesses.