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NWDA Key Messages
The Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) works to build the competitiveness of our region’s Businesses, People and Places — the vital ingredients of economic success. Our expertise and knowledge of the region and its potential means we are uniquely placed to respond to the recession to agree future priorities for developing the region’s £119bn economy. We provide effective business support to help companies weather the economic downturn and emerge stronger. We lead the region towards recovery by providing clear economic leadership and investing in emerging sectors. We deliver value for money – every £1 invested has averaged a return of £5.20 in GVA. We are uniquely placed to support the region’s growth and have a track record of agreeing and delivering economic priorities.
Four key achievements in the recession Real Help Now - Business Link Northwest has facilitated over 7,500 free Financial Healthchecks to provide businesses with an in depth understanding of their current position and opportunities for growth. In the last year, Business Link Northwest has exceeded its targets for business engagement rates with over 92,500 businesses using the new service. Access to Finance – In the past year, the NWDA has provided over £23m of financial support to help the region’s businesses start up, grow and expand via a number of grant and loan schemes. This includes £2.7m of small loans for businesses since Jan 2009; £5.3m of Transitional Loan Funding lent since Jan 2009 and £4.1m provided to over 150 businesses through the Innovation Voucher scheme, which allows companies to collaborate with Higher Education institutions. Bank Relationships – The NWDA has brokered senior level discussions with the banks to unlock funding. Business Link advisors work closely with bank staff with banks encouraged to refer customers to Business Link when they cannot support them. Business Link in the Northwest has developed a ‘webinar’ so all bank staff in the region can understand the Business Link offer. Joint Economic Commission – Taskforce which brings together key public and private sector organisations to prioritise future initiatives and ensure coordinated response to recession. Successes include a coordinated regional response to redundancies, safeguarded apprenticeships, and funding being unlocked for large-scale capital schemes including Carlisle Northern Development Route, Greater Manchester Waste Disposal PFI, Bolton and Liverpool Colleges and West Cumbria Hospital.
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Key projects we have led or supported over the past 10 years, which would not have happened without NWDA intervention, include:
Business MediaCityUK The project will create more than 15,000 jobs, deliver £1bn in additional net value to the Northwest economy over 5 years and provide workspace for over 1,100 creative businesses. Manufacturing Advisory Service To date, the service has created or safeguarded over 8,500 jobs, trained 6,500 adults and achieved cost savings of £740m for Northwest manufacturers. Daresbury Science & Innovation Campus Major investment safeguarded the site from closure and has since attracted 100 hightech companies to Daresbury. A commercial partner is being sought for the next phase of development, which will create 10,000 jobs. Foreign and Direct Investment Having secured over 900 inward investment projects, creating or safeguarding over 85,000 jobs, the Northwest is the UK’s leading region for inward investment outside the South East. Business Link Northwest A streamlined and refocused service was introduced in 2007, to increase the number of Northwest businesses and individuals accessing business support. Last year the improved service helped over 92,500 Northwest businesses, a 30% increase on the previous service in 2005/06.
People University of Manchester Major investment supported the merger of the Victoria University of Manchester and UMIST in 2004, helping to create an institution with over 35,500 students and a turnover of £684m. The University is now the UK’s largest, with total research expenditure having increased by 40% to £375m. Burnley College and university campus Providing places for over 1,000 students by 2010, the campus will improve enterprise and entrepreneurialism in the area, as well as making education more responsive to local business needs.
Place Redevelopment of Ancoats, East Manchester By 2013, the regeneration programme will have created 1,800 residential properties, 60,000 sq m of commercial floorspace and 1,900 new jobs, levering in private sector investment of £330m. Regeneration of Liverpool The creation of Liverpool Commercial District created or safeguarded 1,500 jobs and the transformation of the city’s waterfront has included Liverpool Arena and Convention Centre, Cruise Liner Facility and the new Museum of Liverpool. The Agency was also central to supporting and delivering the city’s 2008 European Capital of Culture programme. Project ACCESS The creation of a high-speed broadband network across Cumbria and North Lancashire has resulted in business adoption of broadband rising from 27% to over 75% -12% higher than the UK average. Total broadband coverage in the area has increased from 30% to 99%.
Renaissance House, Centre Park, Warrington, WA1 1QN Tel: +44 (0)1925 400 100 Fax: +44 (0)1925 400 400 www.nwda.co.uk October 2009 NWDA J9-36