Scheme offers tender support

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Small Cornish companies can gain valuable support in tendering for public and private sector contracts thanks to a partnership between Coodes Solicitors and West Cornwall Business Network (WCBN).

Through the Combined Universities in Cornwall graduate placement scheme Unlocking Cornish Potential (UCP), the two organisations have recruited a tendering partnership project manager, Sam Marnham.

Marnham, a business studies graduate, is based at Coodes’ Truro office. He will be working to create a formal framework to allow west Cornwall businesses to collaborate for public and private sector contracts.

Marnham, aged 21, said: “This is an exciting opportunity to work alongside small businesses in Cornwall, within a role where I can help them develop and grow. I hope to bring public and private sector organisations closer together so they can form strong working relationships.”

Marnham’s placement at Coodes is being overseen by commercial solicitor Jonathan Wilde, who said: “Coodes is extremely committed to supporting the business community, and Sam’s placement with us represents a fresh way of thinking – encouraging businesses to collaborate and compete on a level playing field.”

WCBN offers practical support services to local enterprises, partly funded by Kerrier and Penwith District Councils. Its economic development officer, Maxine Hardy, said: “This project will help create excellent opportunities for our members. We’re also hoping it will enable businesses to collaborate in tendering exercises, making the most of local talent and ensuring public spending stays in Cornwall.”

Louise Oldham, senior business development manager at UCP, added: “Through additional funding from Convergence, the UCP programme has expanded so we have capacity to take on many more interesting projects like Sam’s.

“We are also seeing more organisations work together to harness the talents of a graduate to help the growth of businesses.”