Local business people joined Cranfield University academics to learn how to grow their companies, with 50 participants coming along to the “Boost Your Business” event. The event outlined networking, research and funding opportunities for SMEs and was led by Cranfield School of Management. 

A two-part boost for local businesses

The event started with a welcome from Professor David Oglethorpe (Pro-Vice Chancellor and Dean) who stressed the numerous ways Cranfield School of Management works closely with industry. This was followed by presentations on the various opportunities for SME business owners. Presentations covered a range of topics; the variety of opportunities for gaining funding for a project, and a presentation from Lakshmy Subramanian who, as a Knowledge Transfer Partnership Associate, analysed her experience of the scheme. The second part of the event was a business surgery, where business owners could speak to academics on the challenges they faced and get answers to their questions.

Building connections and giving business advice

Shane Walton, from Shane Walton Consulting, who attended the Boost Your Business event said: “This was a great opportunity to pinpoint the experts and organisations I need to contact to take my business where I want it to go. I’ve already arranged a follow-up meeting where I can go through my next steps.”

Professor Michael Bourlakis, Director of Research at Cranfield’s School of Management, said: “We were delighted to have good representation from various industry sectors and the event was a major success, fostering numerous connections between the participants with follow-up meetings being planned. We aim to run another event in the near future aiming to capitalise on this initial success.”

Dr Sandra Messenger, Knowledge Exchange Manager at the Research and Innovation Office at Cranfield University, said: “The event was a great way to raise awareness about the opportunities that are out there for SME business owners who are looking to expand, whilst also showing how Cranfield has already supported other business owners to do so. At Cranfield, we provide support and assistance to businesses that want to work with us.  This is dependent on the business need and ranges from suggesting mechanisms of working together and potential funding streams to helping to strengthen the content of funding applications.”

If you are interested in attending the next Boost Your Business event then email events@cranfield.ac.uk. This event is free. 

About Cranfield University

Cranfield University is a specialist postgraduate university that is a global leader for education and transformational research in technology and management.