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  • Blog Post: What future for the High Street?

    A news item on BBC Breakfast this am featured a couple of high streets - Swindon in Wiltshire and Wimbledon Common. It's probably not news to many of us but the traditional, independent high street retailer is fast becoming a shop of the past as supermarkets continue to embrace every product available...
  • Blog Post: Budget implications for small businesses

    It looks like there are a few nuggets of good news for small businesses in the budget. Aside from the welcome delay in increasing fuel duty, there are several features of note. A particularly interesting one is the capital fund of £12.5m to encourage more women entrepreneurs, supplemented by an additional...
  • Blog Post: Guest Blog: Is my Business getting left behind?

    It is a valid and important question every business owner should ask. Today’s technology is advancing at a rapid rate. Almost everyday something new hits the markets. New applications, new designs, new ways to market business, and let’s not forget new tools like Google Glass, smart watches...
  • Blog Post: Why I love direct mail

    Guest blog from Howard Graham, CEO and Founder of The Made Simple Group and member of the BBC’s Small Business Panel of Experts . All opinions stated are the author’s own. Perhaps it’s just me - but I seem to be getting a lot less junk mail through my letterbox. What was once a steady stream of...
  • Blog Post: Married to the business

    According to a Barclays Local Business report , small business owners plan to stay in business longer than the span of an average marriage. Now I'm not sure whether this is naive, reassuring, a sad indictment of our times, or evidence of a true British entrepreneurial spirit, but the level of commitment...
  • Blog Post: Third-age entrepreneurs older, wiser and setting up businesses

    There's a great story on the BBC business site, talking about ‘older' entrepreneurs. Interestingly, the over-50s represent a significant proportion of start-ups and, unlike your typical 20-year whizz kid let's-make-lots-of-money scenario, their aim is not to grow into a multi-national company. More typically...
  • Blog Post: Manufacturing & production moving back to UK?

    I caught an interesting item on BBC breakfast news this morning, on a Nottinghamshire-based manufacturer of children’s safety harnesses which has moved production back to the UK from China. With inflation and labour costs increasing – and forecast to rise significantly over the coming year – production...
  • Blog Post: What sells in a recession?

    There's a great new article on MSN Money, 'What sells in a recession ?', spotlighting products and industries which are actually seeing significant growth in the current economic climate - it's well worth a read. Here's a taste: Caravans are hot (apparently). Fewer of us are indulging in exotic...
  • Blog Post: Small Business goes Northwest

    Microsoft is keen to get closer to its small business customers to provide more specific, relevant and above all - local resources. So as a pilot, we've launched a Northwest Small Business site , offering access to local business organisations, including Business Enterprise Northwest and Business...
  • Blog Post: Budget implications for small businesses: round-up

    Reactions to the budget implications for small businesses are somewhat mixed - here's a round-up of what industry bodies are saying. Overall the budget does not appear to have been particularly well received although there are some nuggets for small businesses. The FSB's reaction to the budget is...