Virgin Money and Virgin StartUp join forces to help small businesses
Virgin StartUp is an independent, not-for-profit organisation that focuses on entrepreneurship and was founded by Richard Branson in 2013. It exists to empower founders to not only start up and survive, but to thrive. Virgin StartUp provides business advice, funding, mentoring, training and networking to thousands of business founders across the UK each year.
Now, more than ever small businesses need support. Data from Companies House reveals that 768,777 new businesses were founded in 2020 – 13% more than in 2019. This suggests that the coronavirus pandemic has created a surge in entrepreneurship and many people are seizing the opportunity for innovation.
From June 2021, all Virgin Money business customers – including those under the Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank brands, will have access to the support that Virgin StartUp provides and will be able to join the community of 190,000 founders and future founders. As well as providing guidance and support for small businesses, this partnership will also provide founders with the opportunity to take part in discounted training opportunities and access new digital resources that Virgin Money and Virgin StartUp are developing.
“The Virgin brand is synonymous with entrepreneurship and business growth, so we are proud to be launching our partnership with Virgin StartUp to give customers in the early stages of their business access to insight, training and networking to a global community,” David Duffy, CEO at Virgin Money, said. “With more businesses being established during the pandemic, this partnership comes at a great time for our business customers, who will have the opportunity to gain valuable insight from the top professionals in their field.”
Virgin Money will also sponsor a series of Virgin StartUp events, including its popular MeetUp series, which will be delivered for free to thousands of founders around the country each month. MeetUp events provide an opportunity for the small business community to come together online and learn from experts, founders and each other. Each session offers inspirational and practical solutions, through live panel discussions, audience Q&A, breakout sessions and networking.
Andy Fishburn, managing director, Virgin StartUp added: “Virgin has entrepreneurship at its heart, having spent the last 50 years starting and scaling businesses around the world. In 2013, Virgin StartUp was founded by Sir Richard Branson to support the next generation of founders who are looking to do the same. Small businesses will be vital in helping to rebuild the economy. Our partnership with Virgin Money will help us both provide more of the support that is needed and be a driving force in Changing Business for Good. The partnership is focused on supporting entrepreneurial Britain, giving founders access to the right type of funding and expertise.”