ScaleUp Ashford

What is ScaleUp Ashford?

ScaleUp Ashford is a fully funded business programme, providing support for organisations located in Ashford with the ambition and capacity to grow. The programme has been endorsed by the ScaleUp Institute.

As part of a commitment to develop economic prosperity across the borough and build an environment in which local businesses can grow, Ashford Borough Council funded and launched the programme in September 2017. It’s a one year, 80% funded* programme of support for a maximum of five businesses in Ashford that have the capacity and ambition to grow.

Each business receives 32hrs of intensive 1:1 coaching with expert coaches and forms part of a cohort that will be exposed to networking and shared learning opportunities. They are supported in creating and reaching ambitious growth goals that support the local economy.

*A contribution of £50 per month is payable quarterly in advance

Eligible businesses will need to be:

  • located in Ashford
  • have been trading for at least 3 years
  • employ approx. 5+ staff
  • have the capacity and ambition to grow

In return you will receive up to 24 hours of intensive business coaching over a 12 month period plus peer group sessions every quarter.

Benefits of joining the ScaleUp programme

Businesses selected to join ScaleUp Ashford receive:

  • 32 hours of consultancy, given by a highly-successful growth coach

  • access to specialised business growth tools

  • unlimited access to a localised team of experts specifically chosen to help you address and overcome key barriers to growth, such as international trade, finance, HR, property or legal queries

  • grant and funding application support to access the appropriate local, regional and national government funding schemes

  • exclusive membership to a network of likeminded business owners, to share common challenges, best practise and collaboration opportunities

  • a unique platform to promote, showcase and celebrate their business success

ScaleUp Ashford’s success

The previous programme participants benefited from increased growth including:

  • £4,236,000 increase in turnover
  • £1,020,00 of capital investment
  • created 47 new jobs
  • received £237,000 in grant funding

Businesses in the 2022/23 cohort included Stephenson Bros., Borderpoint Films, Frasers of Egerton and Kare Plus.

Kare Plus, 2022/23 ScaleUp Ashford cohort
Kare Plus, 2022/23 ScaleUp Ashford cohort

The 2023/2024 cohort are:

  • Label manufacturers Lemon Labels

  • Video production companies Modus Films and OCD Media Modus Film

  • Opticians Brown Bills Optometrists

  • Tourism operators Wine Tours of Kent

  • Publishing and design company Sideways Media

  • Construction surveyors Costplan

You can keep track their progress in our latest ScaleUp Ashford news update.

How to apply to ScaleUp Ashford

To find out more about the programme or register your interest, contact a member of the team using the Expression of Interest for ScaleUp Ashford form.