Independent businesses across the UK to celebrate Independents’ Day 2014

Thousands of independent businesses across the UK to celebrate Independents’ Day 2014

 

Tomorrow, 4 July, thousands of independent retail and hospitality businesses across the UK will come together as part of Independents’ Day, the national campaign that celebrates the importance and contribution of independent businesses to the UK economy.

Independent businesses are holding special events and promotions as part of the day, including themed window displays, high street festivities, discounts and offers, calling on the public to buy from independent shops and boost their profitability.

The campaign is organised by People 1st, and the National Skills Academy for Retail’s network of over 50 skills shops supported activities to promote their work to help independent businesses become more profitable and successful. Local authorities, chambers of commerce, retail and hospitality industry bodies have also shown their support and promoted the event in local areas.1

The campaign is also backed by Theo Paphitis, long time star of the BBC’s Dragons’ Den, Chairman of Ryman Stationery and Robert Dyas and founder of the lingerie brand Boux Avenue.

Jane Rexworthy, executive director People 1st – strategic partnerships and head of the National Skills Academy for Retail, said: “We have been delighted to see so many local authorities putting their weight behind local celebrations and working closely with their independent businesses to get them involved.

“Over the last four years, we have seen the campaign go from strength to strength and we are pleased to see that the locations involved have looked at the campaign as an opportunity to promote their local area and encourage their local community to use independent businesses.

“We are committed to supporting the growth of independent businesses and to help them increase their business skills.  Our WorldHost training programme has helped boost customer service skills and the Digital High Street Skillsprogramme has proven to help businesses make the most of their websites and social media. Through the Employer Ownership Fund, available until the end of July 2014, small businesses may be able to access training at reduced rates and we urge small businesses to take advantage of this opportunity before it’s too late.”

Skills and Enterprise Minister Matthew Hancock said: “Independents’ day is a great opportunity for people to show their support for small businesses – the lifeblood of our economy. It is part of the Government’s long term economic plan to ensure that small businesses have the right environment to grow.

“The Digital High Street programme, launched this year, will help businesses take advantage of increasing opportunities online and the new markets that will open up.”

Commenting, Labour’s Shadow Business Secretary Chuka Umunna MP said: “Independents’ Day is a fantastic campaign, celebrating small businesses and the positive impact they make within local communities.

“Alongside Small Business Saturday towards the end of the year – and which returns on December 6th – I hope Independents’ Day will be even bigger and better this year and will see even more people discover unique, independent shops on high streets across Britain and buying local.”

For more information on Independents’ Day activities and training support available for independent businesses visit: www.indieday.co.uk. Businesses can also get advice and guidance from http://www.mybusiness1st.co.uk/, a website dedicated to supporting new and existing businesses.

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