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European Regional Development Fund

We have been nurturing and facilitating the next generation of new businesses and start-ups since 1984.  

How to Start a Business! If you are looking to start your own business or are transferring your skills to become a freelancer or a sole trader, our 5* rated package of support is ideal. It will give you the key points to get your business venture set on the best footing.  

Our training received a 78 Net Promoter Satisfaction Score in 2020

We have helped thousands of new businesses across both Norfolk and Suffolk with our award-winning package of start-up and new business training, supporting and advising entrepreneurs across Norfolk and Suffolk. With the free package of support, you will learn all you need to know about setting up your business. What it means to become your own boss and the business plans and steps you will need to action. This includes legal requirements, marketing your business, identifying your target audience and bookkeeping. Plus, you’ll be joined by likeminded new business owners enabling you to build a network and develop your business idea in a supportive environment.

The MENTA package of Start-up support is fully funded by the ERDF (European Regional Development Fund). To be eligible to receive the training free of charge, you must live in Norfolk or Suffolk, be thinking of setting up a new business or have been trading for less than 12 months, and you need to sign up and complete all three workshops in the programme.

Online training workshops

Our award-winning start-up business training is available online. Having launched this option in March 2020, our delegate feedback has been hugely positive. The fully interactive live training is delivered by video conferencing, you will learn new skills and develop your new business plans from the safety and comfort of your home, while still benefiting from our trainers’ expert knowledge and building your business network.

Book your How to Start a Business training below!

*You are required to sign up and complete all three workshops. *We plan to reintroduce our face-to-face sessions as soon as safety allows.

Workshop 1: Planning

What's covered?

  • Financing your start-up
  • Business planning and sales forecasting
  • Registering your business
  • The reality of owning your own business
  • Understanding self-employment after employment or unemployment

Workshop 2: Marketing

What's covered?

  • Marketing planning, strategies, tools and techniques
  • Tips for setting up a simple website
  • Using social media for your business
  • Understanding your customer base, and what they want
  • The key to success: identifying your USP

Workshop 3: Bookkeeping

What's covered?

  • Setting up simple hard and soft copy bookkeeping systems
  • Tax and NI explained
  • Excel spreadsheet templates for record keeping and profit, tax and NI calculations
  • Understanding Self-Assessment
  • Establishing best practice

Our customers say...

#StartUp “This training was superb and has given me so much”  

Helen Garth

July 2021

"I doubted this Zoom training would be worth the time but I was wrong, I loved the session and have taken away so many actions to help my business ”

Joff, Felixstowe.

July 2021

"The Business planning course was really good. Full of simple instructions and easy to absorb all that was said. Time passed very quickly as it was very interesting and enjoyable, Thank you"



June 2021

“I highly recommend the series of support for anyone who is moving freelance or starting a new business, John and Shaun were superb and so very insightful”  

Lesley, Cromer

June 2021

“I felt that Shaun had a lot of past hands on experience that was so useful and interesting. So many facts packed into an afternoon. Brilliant. Felt very inspired as a result of being on this course with such an amazing trainer”

Mike, Ipswich

January 2021
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