Business: Essex

Business, Innovation and Skills written question – answered on 3rd July 2012.

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Photo of Priti Patel Priti Patel Conservative, Witham

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills how many businesses in (a) Witham constituency and (b) Essex have participated in the business mentor scheme.

Photo of Mark Prisk Mark Prisk The Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

Over 12,000 volunteers have now been recruited through the Get Mentoring scheme, which is led by Small Firms Enterprise Development Initiative (SFEDI). More than 7,000 of these volunteers have already completed training—around 8% of whom are based in the East of England/Essex. This estimate is only approximate and based on the location of the workshop they attended so does not include those who have completed their training via online or distance learning. We do not currently have the data to ascertain how many were recruited from Witham constituency specifically.

Volunteer mentors recruited and trained through Get Mentoring are deployed via the mentoring organisations on mentorsme.co.uk, the national mentoring portal or mentor businesses within their own networks. It is too early yet to provide robust data on the number of businesses being mentored by Get Mentoring volunteers. We do not have data to say how many mentoring relationships have been developed and therefore how many businesses have benefitted as a result of mentorsme.

At the start of 2011 it is estimated that there were around 475,000 private sector enterprises in the East of England. Based on results from the Small Business Survey 2010 it is estimated that around 40,000 (8.5%) of these would have used a business mentor during the preceding 12 months.

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