Just like millions of entrepreneurs and businesses throughout the world, Exponential Training was set up from a kitchen table. What I would have done for some help and support from initiatives such as Home Initiative and LEXSHA!
I have just learned that home businesses are to be given a boost by the Government as part of a drive to encourage more kitchen table start-ups. The UK’s, Enterprise Minister, Matthew Hancock has announced the new Home Business Initiative, making it easier for people to start businesses from home. As a home business start-up entrepreneur myself, I am proud to be in a position to be able to help other ‘would-be entrepreneurs’ and am a supporter of the Home Business initiative.
I know when I started Exponential from a table in my kitchen, I had to contend with lots of red tape and bureaucracy. It is great news that the UK government is seeking to encourage more start-ups to take the ‘domestic plunge’ by cutting the cost and bureaucracy associated with running a business from home. No longer will would-be entrepreneurs be required to file for planning permission to run a home-based business – better still the majority will not be required to pay business rates – how that would have helped my fledgling Exponential!
Recent research undertaken by the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) and Enterprise Nation has found that home-based businesses contribute a massive £300bn annually to the UK economy. The study also found that that there are just under three millon home-based companies in the UK, which is equivalent to 59 per cent of all UK small enterprise. It is astonishing to think that home-based entrepreneurs currently contribute £1 out of every £11 of turnover generated by UK Ltd.
Another amazing finding of the study is that 70 per cent of new enterprises are set up in the home which means these are the businesses that will generate new jobs in the future. Working from home also means that there is an army of budding entrepreneurs who can end up feeling lonely – this can be quite a scary position to be in as you have no one else to turn to for ideas and help.
With the demise of the UK’s Business Link network in 2011, many entrepreneurs find it more difficult than ever to know who to turn for advice and support. This is one of the reasons I am so excited about the new on-line portal for entrepreneurs and micro-enterprises – LEXSHA (Learn, Explore and Share).
Later this year, the LEXSHA online portal will go live, providing entrepreneurs and business owners from the UK, France, Portugal, Germany, The Netherlands, Sweden, Lithuania and Greece the opportunity to access and share ideas, knowledge and experience on running and building a business with other like-minded entrepreneurs.
What is unique about LEXSHA, is that unlike other business and learning platforms, all of the ideas, tools and techniques featured on the platform have been used, developed and added to the platform by people already running their own business.
From January 2015, home-based business owners, small businesses and entrepreneurs will be able access and use the on-line ideas and information. They will also be able to network on-line with like-minded entrepreneurs throughout Europe. The European Commission is funding the LEXSHA project.