Retford’s expanded Enterprise Centre has officially opened with 10 new multi-purpose units in a £1.45million project responsing to demand for quality office and clean manufacturing space locally – and for larger premises for growth firms.
The offices were opened by the Leader of Bassetlaw District Council, Cllr Simon Greaves, Chris Scholey from the Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership, and Bassetlaw Council Chairman, Cllr Madelaine Richardson (seen above, left to right).
Cllr Greaves said; “I’m delighted to be opening phase two of the Retford Enterprise Centre. This kind of development demonstrates the commitment that Bassetlaw District Council has in stimulating the local economy by creating the right environment for businesses to get started and to grow.
“The development and growth of the small business sector is absolutely vital for our own future growth.
The development of Phase 2 was financed through an investment of £590,000 from Bassetlaw District Council, in addition to £135,000 of section 106 funding, and a £725,000 grant from the Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership.
The funding from the Sheffield City Region is part of the £320million Sheffield City Region Infrastructure Fund. This fund includes a contribution from the Government’s Local Growth Fund which is part of the Government’s continued investment in the Northern Powerhouse.
Chris Scholey, from Sheffield City Region LEP, said: “Offering assistance to start-up businesses and supporting them as they grow is such an important role and at Sheffield City Region we are proud that we have helped to create 16,000 jobs in the region in the last three years and have assisted 7,580 new businesses start up since 2014.
“Sheffield City Region is a strong public-private partnership that works together as one on issues such as transport, infrastructure, housing and business support, and it is this element of business support that has seen centres such as this thrive.
“It is really heartening to learn that the Retford Enterprise Centre has been so successful and that those original businesses now require larger office space to meet their demands and continued growth.”
Retford Enterprise Centre was built in 2010 and is currently home to 22 businesses. It also provides virtual tenancies for 17 businesses that need a base but are not quite ready to commit to renting a full-time office.
Three office spaces have already been reserved by companies based in the original Enterprise Centre and need to move to larger premises, with the remaining new units now ready for tenants to move into.
Alpha-Gen’s story illustrates the need for the expansion at Retford Enterprise Centre. Alpha-Gen specialises in IT Cyber Security and has been based at the Enterprise Centre since July 2013.
Director Stuart Reay said: “It’s great to be in a brand new space that will allow our business to continue to grow.
“When we created Alpha-Gen in 2013, Retford Enterprise Centre gave us a low-cost and low-risk environment where we could get things started. As we grew, the incubator nature of the REC has allowed us to move to a larger office where the business has flourished.
“Alpha-Gen is growing rapidly with plans to expand into European sales from January 2018, and as we move into the next stage of growth, the new offices have come along at the perfect time to support us. We employ 23 people who are mostly from Retford and the surrounding area, so it was great that we could still be part of the REC and remain in the area.”