Business advice and support
There are number of business support and advice organisations operating in the borough, please see the list below to find the assistance you require:
Hotline – Call: 03333602300
The Kent and Medway Growth Hub provides a dedicated business support hotline that can advise and signpost businesses to the latest support, funding and other local opportunities available.
The Government have provided a resource with advice covering a range of areas linked to growing your business. Visit their ‘Growing your business’ hub.
The programme will provide West Kent (Sevenoaks, Tonbridge and Malling, and Tunbridge Wells) businesses with a 1-2-1 business support course and grant to support their start-up. This scheme will open in April 2023 and details will be provided on the business portal.
- The Department for International Trade provides a range of advice and activities to help get all SME's exporting including a face to face meeting with an expert trade adviser.
- Open to Export is a free interactive portal where companies can find country/market information, seek advice from other exporters and exchange ideas.
- Export Savvy is available as an on-line learning tool for businesses who want to learn more about doing business overseas.
- Kent International Business (KIB) is a Kent-wide initiative which aims to encourage Kent businesses to access overseas markets and to provide information, advice and support to help them do so. For export support activities see Upcoming Events
- Do you want to expand to China, India or any other part of Asia? Check out the useful and easy business guidance first from Asia House.
- Those in the science and technology industries can obtain guidance and support from Innovate UK
- For food businesses, our Environmental Health Team are a great help and there is also the Food Standards Agency, who provide very good business guidance for food hygiene.
- Trading standards advice for businesses can be found at the Business Companion website.
- Practical tax and financial record keeping is covered by the HM Revenue and Customs web pages including webinars.
Help is at hand from The Office of the Small Business Commissioner. In order to help small businesses with this tricky issue The Commissioner will:
- support small businesses to resolve payment disputes;
- tackle the unfair payment practices of larger businesses that adversely affect many small businesses.
Visit small business commissioner to find out more, as well as how to take action if a payment is overdue.
Specific late payment enquiries go to email@example.com or telephone 0121 695 7770.
There is a great deal of resources and tools available from the central government website: Business is GREAT, and you can find a business plan template via the British Library.
Better Business for All is a local partnership that bridges the gap between businesses and bureaucracy, saving you time to concentrate on what really matters in your business.
Research is a major part of business planning. Suitable resources include the British Library Business Centre as well as Ask a Kent Librarian, and the various business Chambers.
Which Franchise offer a range of franchise opportunities.