The Launchbox has lift off

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A new £50k fund to help entrepreneurs and self-employed people with inspiring business ideas has been unveiled.

The Launchbox is a privately-funded initiative by local charity the Norda Trust and based at The Workbox, the freelance club workspace at PZ360 in the centre of Penzance, to incubate new and innovative business ideas in the Penwith area.

Launchbox manager, Janet Ross, said: “The aim of the Launchbox is to offer grants of £1k up to £10k without the red tape and restrictions of other funding avenues.”

Those interested in the Launchbox will be in invited to fill in a simple application form detailing the business idea, as well as the experience of the applicant. The application form is then assessed and, if successful, the applicant will be invited to present a live pitch in front of a panel of business experts at The Workbox.

The panel will ask questions, evaluate the business plan, offer advice and, if it feels the business idea has potential, offer a cash investment.

Members of the judging panel include Sir John Banham, former director-general of the Confederation of British Industries; Kim Conchie, chief executive of Cornwall Chamber of Commerce; Peter Wright, founder of YTKO; John Cowles, managing director of Altcom Ltd; Susan Stuart, former director of Thrive; Simon Murley, managing director of Microcomms Ltd; and Mike Adams, managing director at Addition Accounting.

Those interested in an application pack, should email info@thelaunchbox.org.uk or call 01736 333073.