Getting SMEs ready to supply the City

East London Small Business Centre, with funding from the City of London Corporation, is delivering a project designed to help Tower Hamlets based small businesses supply City Firms.

The project is one of seven funded by the City of London Corporation and being delivered across the City-fringe boroughs[1] as part of Supply Chain support for Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs).

Specifically focusing on sectors with the potential to sell to City firms, the businesses are being supported to improve their business structure and review the price and quality of services offered.

By providing tailored business support, East London Small Business Centre delivers a Business support programme which responds to the business needs of business owners across the City fringe borough of Tower Hamlets.

Once the businesses which take part in the programme are supply ready, they will have the opportunity to take part in ‘Question and Answer’ sessions with experienced City buyers to enable the SMEs to gain a better understanding of what City firms are looking for from potential suppliers. Pauline Barnett, Chief Executive at East London Small Business Centre said: “We often find that our clients are too busy with the everyday running of their businesses and subsequently do not step back and look at the potential opportunities in the Square mile – especially in an economic downturn in the market place.”

Stuart Fraser, Chairman of the Policy and Resources Committee at the City of London Corporation says, “This additional funding support will help small businesses to navigate their way out of this difficult post-recessionary period, to further economic prosperity. The help on offer will ensure they are equipped with the knowledge, experience and contacts to enable them to harness the huge business potential on their doorstep.”

This project forms part of a direct response to recommendations made in the research publication ‘The City of London’s Supply Chain and its relations with the City Fringes’.[i] The research highlighted that small businesses based in City’s neighbouring boroughs could improve their share of the City’s purchasing power and that City firms preferred to use suppliers within close proximity.

[1] ‘City fringes’ refers to the London Boroughs of Camden, Hackney, Islington, Lambeth, Southwark, Tower Hamlets and Westminster City Council.

[i] According to research commissioned by the City of London Corporation and completed by the Centre for Economic and Business Research The City of London’s Supply Chain and its Relationship with the City Fringes.

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