The Swansea Start-Up Expo Business Information

EVENTS  > THE SWANSEA START-UP EXPO

The Swansea Start-Up Expo

Support Info Provided by stakeholders:

In partnership with key organisations, this one-stop event offered attendees a wide range of advice, support and expertise to start a business in Swansea Bay, attracting 350 prospective entrepreneurs.

Hywel Bassett – Business Wales:

Please find below the contact number to ring for any individual – both ‘Pre Start’ and ‘Trading Businesses’  wishing to receive  help and support from Business Wales.

03000 6 03000

Call the Business Wales Helpline on 03000 6 03000. The Business Wales Helpline is available via e-mail, Live Chat and phone from Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm except on public holidays.

The web site has comprehensive details of support that the Business Wales service can offer.

Bethan Eakins – Multiply Gower College:

Discover attached flyers below.

Additionally, our website features a growing selection of courses, updated monthly, all offered free of charge to individuals aged 19 or over residing or employed in Swansea.


Enhance your everyday skills with us! Explore more at Gower College Swansea.

Ben Reynolds – Urban Foundry:

  • Monthly street markets at Mumbles (second Saturday of the month), Marina (second Sunday of the month) and Uplands (last Saturday of the month) – booking via www.swanseabaystreetmarkets.co.uk
  • PopUp Wales, providing access for short-term popup spaces for test trading for start-ups, interest can be registered at www.popupwales.com
  • We will have our Social Innovation Hub operating by the summer at HQ, which will provide additional cowork space (we’re at capacity currently except for informal coworking in the café) and offices for hire, as well as additional events space for hire, I can provide further information on that once it’s ready to go – bit of work to do yet
  • We will have some Green Infrastructure work in the second half of this year through an SPF supported project, but no dates yet for that

There’s also the monthly anti-social networking event at HQ Urban Kitchen, which takes place on the third Thursday of every month from 5-7, no sign-up required, you can just turn up (info on that attached) 

Sid – Find A Business Expert

We offer all businesses £100 – £50 into Tide bank account and £50 to use on FaBE services/experts. No issues if they don’t want use the £50 on a FaBE membership they can just take the £50 into Tide bank account.

We have vetted experts on the platform, all from owner managed businesses and many from Swansea so contributing to the local economy – our service is free to identify suitable experts, have an exploratory chat and if the entrepreneur wants to work with them, everything is direct. We do not take any commission.

We can help them get found online, drive traffic to their website/LI profile and network with hundreds of businesses every week – £11.53/week for Expert membership. A starter membership is only £5.77/week

We have many other Free resources on our website under guides. We also have content from an entrepreneurship programme we delivered to Swansea University graduates. This is included in the starter membership

Dylan Williams-Evans – UWTSD

In relation to workshops that we have available through the Scale project please see the link below for the latest offering.

A handy tool that could be shared is the Business Wales Events Finder (link below) as this has a huge variety of business workshops including startup.

They also have a finance/grant funding finder tool which again is very useful.

Debbie Price – NPT Council

Check out my information along with a direct link to Funding Support and Events featured on our website:

Name: Debbie Price
Role: New Business Support & Development Mentor
Organization: Neath Port Talbot County Council


Explore our new website for comprehensive Business Startup Help and New Business Support services specific to Neath Port Talbot.

Carl Gough – Cwmpas

We believe our economy and society should work differently, putting people and planet first. Cwmpas is a development agency working for positive change.

Our friendly team of advisers can offer expert help and support across a wide range of areas.

Stephen Williams – Swansea Council

Explore the wealth of insights provided in our funding workshop presentation, designed to equip you with the knowledge and strategies needed to secure essential funding for your business ventures.

Additionally, delve into our comprehensive Business Grants summary, offering a concise overview of available funding opportunities tailored to your needs. Access these invaluable resources by downloading the attachments below.

Kim Mamhende – The CAE

The CAE provides support to aspiring entrepreneurs and start ups through the following services:

  • Idea generation and feasibility studies
  • Setting up and registration
  • Business coaching and mentoring
  • Training and workshops
  • Networking opportunities
  • Access to resources

We also understand that the entrepreneurial journey can be a lonely one, and are here as a critical friend to help you navigate through it.

April Monthly Meetup – Young People!

April Monthly Meetup – Young People!

PROJECTS  > APRIL 2024 MONTHLY MEETUP

4theRegion Monthly Meetup – Young People!

Creative Monthly Meetup

What are the opportunities for young people in South West Wales?

This discussion emphasised the importance of engaging young people in South West Wales and ensuring their active participation within their communities. There was a strong focus on involving them directly in decision-making, and ensuring that young people are well-informed about available opportunities, from apprenticeships to outdoor learning to life coaching!

Hear from numerous regional organisations about their projects and initiatives for and with young people.  As usual, collaboration across different sectors is essential to create more inclusive opportunities and make young people feel valued, connected and supported to thrive in South West Wales.

Full Meeting Recording

Meeting Highlights & Notes

Colleagues from across our region share their updates and announcements as part of a co-created celebration of the array of opportunities for young people in South West Wales!

James Dovey from the Battle Arcade Project, Llanelli – Engages young people in building arcade machines and learning to use CNC machines, exposing them to new technologies and ways of working.

Zubs Iftikhar from YMCA, Swansea – Offers a comprehensive range of projects supporting young people: 5-day open access Youth Service drop-in; LGBTQ youth group available on Tuesdays; YTalent music project; Young Carers Service for individuals up to age 25 – and so much more.  Keen to work with local organisations to support young people.  If anyone would like any further information please get in touch Zubs@ymcaswansea.org.uk

Ffion from Working Options – Recently expanded into Wales, focusing on employability and life skills for ages 12-19.  Provides industry insights and skill sessions, emphasising transferable skills.  https://workingoptions.org.uk/  ffion@workingoptions.org.uk ! Please feel free to reach out as we begin to expand into Wales to inspire and support the next generation.

Ruth Robinson from SCVS – For those that are working with volunteers aged 14-25 in Swansea we have a Youth Bank Grant available. This up to £1,000 to support youth led ideas. For more information Ii can be contacted at ruth_robinson@scvs.org.uk

Alex from Pembrokeshire County Council Business Support Team – Organising a 2-day boot camp for young people’s business start-ups, covering branding, marketing, and social media for individuals aged 16 and above.

Ruth from Selva Coaching – A new social enterprise aimed at coaching young people in their 20s on identity, life goals, and core values.  If you have a person in their 20s in your life who is feeling lost and not sure what to do next please send them my direction as I can offer them some free 1:1 coaching as part of my pilot project.

James Morgan from Swansea Arena – Developing new projects including setting up a music tech academy to offer students real-world, hands-on experience.  The creative sector is growing, and the arena wants to platform and promote local musicians and artists.  jamesmorgan@theambassadors.com

Keith Harries from Coleg Sir Gar – Currently offering free numeracy training for people aged 19+ through the Mulyiply project. Details are available on the college website.

Tom Moses, CWBR Youth, PLANED – Highlighted the importance of showcasing positive things to young people and discussed how to amplify these initiatives.  Focuses on connecting young people with town councils and has been successful in integrating them into decision-making processes.  Announced a new project bid for a regional project to connect young people with elective representatives and community project leaders to enhance youth voice.  Looking for collaborators for this initiative. To share the learnings from the Cwbr Youth project – online event Tuesday 23rd 7pm tom.moses@planed.org.uk

Rhys Harries from Inspiring Skills – Skills Competition Wales, which provides vocational competitions for young people to showcase their skills.  Winners get the opportunity to progress to UK and World Skills competitions.  Emphasises nurturing mindset skills as well as vocational skills, with support from colleges.

Claire Reid, Gower College Swansea – Fantastic opportunities being shared here. It would be great to collaborate to support our 4,500 full time and 10,000 part time learners across the Swansea area and beyond. As Enterprise Champion I am passionate in supporting students across all learning areas and at all levels of study. Please do get in touch. claire.reid@gowercollegeswansea.ac.uk

Will Evans, founder of Will’s Petting Farm, Swansea – Will is a young entrepreneur;  Excited about working with schools and children to show the lifecycle of a chick, helping connect children with nature and animal care.  will@willspettingfarm.co.uk

Sue Poole from Young Dragons – Focused on promoting opportunities in the construction sector across the region, to primary age children, with special attention to introducing careers to females in construction.  Collaborates with various construction companies through the City Deal, Cyfle, and Raven Delta Group.  www.young-dragons.co.uk

Andrew Veevers from Mosaic Professional Development – Discusses the gap between teaching and professional development, promoting experiential learning as a new way to engage with professional development.  CMI highlighted that 82% of managers lack formal training; his approach is proactive in helping people develop necessary skills.

Ian Howells from ACO Training – Offers apprenticeships in Business Admin and Accounting to young people.

Jessica Davies – DVLA – Runs DVLA’s Employability Skills programme, offering free skills sessions within Swansea, NPT, and Llanelli.  Facilitates mock interviews and provides CV tips (general and Civil Service-specific), also demystifying the Civil Service to make it more accessible to those without degrees.

Lucy Cummings from PLANED – Acts as a catalyst for care-focused micro-enterprises in Carmarthenshire.  Provides one-to-one support for setting up and expanding micro-enterprises in the care sector.  Also facilitates a network group for social workers and health board staff.

Saadia Abubaker, founder of Saadia Speaks – Runs a youth empowerment platform aimed at inspiring, uplifting, and empowering young people, especially those from minority ethnic backgrounds.  https://www.saadiaspeaks.com/

Tasmin Lee Peckham from Educ8 Training Group – Offers apprenticeships through the Welsh Government, working directly with employers to recruit apprentices from school and provide accredited qualifications.  Apprenticeships fully funded in Wales for both existing and new staff – TasminP@educ8training.co.uk

Geraint Turner, Swansea MAD – There are a series of webinars and workshops with young people in May-June being run by youth organisations across Wales.

Ashley Davies from Canolfan Gwili – New venue available for all kinds of events, centremanager@llanedi.org.uk

Caroline from Swansea College of Art (UWTSD) – Graduate Summer Show is on Friday 17th May 6-9pm Alex and Dynevor Campus. Please come and join us to celebrate the wonderful creative students we have.

Lynette Anthony, Cyfle Building Skills – Shared Apprenticeships and Work Experience in Construction.  www.cyflebuilding.co.uk   lynette.anthony@colegsirgar.ac.uk 

Final Notes

  • In the chat, participants asked whether there has been any thought to have a regional conference around young people – all the organisations that work with them coming together and showcasing success stories.
  • If any of these new connections turn into collaborations then please reach out to us at 4theRegion and let us know – these are good news stories that we would love to share!  lydia@4theregion.org.uk 
  • Participants are encouraged to promote and apply FGA ways of working and goals across their projects.
  • Open invitation for collaboration among partners on various initiatives to further enhance opportunities for young people in the region.

Coming Up in May 2024:

Green Economy Conference 2024

Green Economy Conference 2024

EVENTS  > GREEN ECONOMY CONFERENCE

Green Economy Conference 2024

Swansea Conference

Thursday 19th November | Swansea Arena | Free to Attend

The Green Economy Conference is back for 2024 – an opportunity for businesses and organisations to come together from across Pembrokeshire, Carmarthenshire, Swansea and Neath Port Talbot, to share knowledge and co-create a resilient future.

With insightful panel discussions and over 70 regional exhibitors, it will be a busy day of networking, learning and connecting.  We welcome your involvement as we plan this exciting event.

Book your tickets below to attend

Please email amanda@4theRegion.org.uk to enquire about opportunities to sponsor or exhibit at this major regional event and to request a copy of our Exhibitor brochure.

The 4theRegion Monthly Meet Up

The 4theRegion Monthly Meet Up

The 4theRegion Monthly Meet Up

Bringing together our engaged community of regional businesses, organisations and citizens, our monthly meet-up is a forum to share updates, discuss regional issues and hear about great stuff that’s happening in South West Wales.  Everyone is welcome to join these calls, via Zoom, on the third Thursday of every month, 1pm-2:30.

MONTHLY MEETUPS

Our monthly meetup is the easiest way for you to join in the conversation, make connections and share your opportunities with our cross-sector regional network.  If you are a 4theRegion member and would like the opportunity to speak at one of these meetings, please get in touch with Lydia Fasham: lydia@4theregion.org.uk

The Year of Opportunities

In 2024 we are holding monthly meetups online via Zoom on the third Thursday of each month, which are open to all - part of our mission to connect, share and collaborate around OPPORTUNITIES in South West Wales.

The Year of Opportunities

Opportunities

January 2024

Kicking off our Year of Opportunities with an open conversation about why South West Wales really is a region of opportunities for people and businesses.

Catch up on the Event Notes and Recording

Creative Monthly Meetup

Creative

February 2024

What are the opportunities in South West Wales' creative sector?  In this discussion, businesses and organisations shared their perspective on why our creative economy is important, and what's happening.

Catch up on the Event Notes and Recording

Construction

Thursday, March 21st
1PM - 2:30PM
Online via Zoom

What are the opportunities in South West Wales' Construction sector? We'll be inviting participants to share positive reflections, projects, initiatives, organisations and opportunities within the construction sector in South West Wales.

Register via Eventbrite

Young People

Thursday, April 18th
1PM - 2:30PM
Online via Zoom

What are the opportunities for Young People in South West Wales? We are looking forward to hearing from young people who are making the most of the opportunities available, to live happier, healthier lives and be part of a thriving economy.

Register via Eventbrite

Regional Food

Thursday, May 16th
1PM - 2:30PM
Online via Zoom

What are the opportunities in the local and sustainable food sector in South West Wales? From local food hubs, to community growing projects, food partnerships and local produce markets, there are plenty of different ways that people and businesses can be part of our region's Good Food Movement.

Register via Eventbrite

Community Resilience

Thursday, June 20th
1PM - 2:30PM
Online via Zoom

What are the opportunities in South West Wales' Construction sector? We'll be inviting participants to share positive reflections, projects, initiatives, organisations and opportunities within the construction sector in South West Wales.

Register via Eventbrite

Circular Economy

Thursday, July 18th
1PM - 2:30PM
Online via Zoom

What are the opportunities in South West Wales' Circular Economy sector? We'll be inviting participants to share positive reflections, projects, initiatives, organisations and opportunities within the circular economy in South West Wales.

Register via Eventbrite

Transport

Thursday, September 19th
1PM - 2:30PM
Online via Zoom

What are the opportunities in South West Wales' transport sector? Hear from people and community transport groups who are trying to make a difference where they live, and explore how you / your business could get more involved in sustainable transport.

Register via Eventbrite

Buying Regional

Thursday, October 17th
1PM - 2:30PM
Online via Zoom

What are the opportunities in buying regional and local procurement in South West Wales?' Hear from people and businesses who are trying to make a difference where they live, and explore how you / your business could get more involved in buying from the region.

Register via Eventbrite

Green Economy

Thursday, November 21st
1PM - 2:30PM
Online via Zoom

What are the opportunities in South West Wales' Green Economy sector? We'll be inviting participants to share positive reflections, projects, initiatives, organisations and opportunities within the green economy in South West Wales.

Register via Eventbrite

Giving Back

Thursday, December 19th
1PM - 2:30PM
Online via Zoom

What are the opportunities for people and businesses in South West Wales to give something back? Come along to this open discussion about why South West Wales really is a land of opportunity, and how we can work together to help people and businesses thrive in our region.

Register via Eventbrite

It’s Your Pembrokeshire 2024

It’s Your Pembrokeshire 2024

EVENTS  > ITS YOUR PEMBROKESHIRE 2024

It’s Your Pembrokeshire 2024

Partners

Wednesday 8th May | The Queens Hall, Narberth | Free

  180 people from Pembrokeshire’s communities, businesses and organisations came together at the Queens Hall in Narberth on Wednesday 8th May 2024, for the inaugural “It’s Your Pembrokeshire” event, hosted by 4theRegion.  It was a full day of discussion on a range of interconnecting themes, highlighting the many opportunities that exist across Pembrokeshire, and how we can collaborate to leverage those opportunities for everyone’s benefit.

From supporting young people to thrive in Pembrokeshire, to important growth sectors such as marine renewables and building retrofit, to opportunities around sustainable food, creative industries, community transport and community ownership… it was a forum for the cross-fertilisation of ideas and valuable networking across sectors.

A full report will follow.  In the meantime, thank you to all those who supported the event, and please share your feedback and personal statements on the links below.  (Personal statements are your opportunity to share contact details, offers / asks / perspectives for inclusion in the event report.)

It’s Your Pembrokeshire 2024

 This event aimed to increase everyone’s awareness of what’s happening, and create potential for new partnerships and new ways of working to address the challenges and opportunities we are all facing.  We think these types of open, cross-sector forum provide a good platform for local partners to share their updates with people who may not be aware of services, support and resources that are available, and to hear new voices and different perspectives. 

FOOD

How can we collaborate to make healthy, local, sustainable food available to all in Pembrokeshire?

COMMUNITY

How can we empower ourselves to create happier, healthier local places, together?

BUYING LOCAL

How can we keep more of our spending within the local economy, and produce more of what we need, locally?

ENVIRONMENT

How can we build a sustainable future and a thriving green economy for our young people and future generations?

TRANSPORT

How can we make it easier for everyone to get around in Pembrokeshire without a car?

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT

How can we empower young people in our communities and organisations, to create the futures they want?

CREATIVE ECONOMY

How can we develop our creative and cultural sectors, to create more jobs, business opportunities and wellbeing?

JOBS & SKILLS

How can we ensure local businesses and key growth sectors can recruit local people with the skills they need?

In each of these discussion zones we were asking, what are the opportunities, what is already happening, and what else needs to happen?

February Monthly Meetup – Creative Region!

February Monthly Meetup – Creative Region!

PROJECTS  > FEBRUARY 2024 MONTHLY MEETUP

4theRegion Monthly Meetup – Creative Region!

Creative Monthly Meetup

What are the opportunities for the creative sector in South West Wales?

Creativity and the creative sector encompass a wide variety of practices, including architecture, culture, broadcasting, digital, and writing.  We’re looking for opportunities in the creative world for businesses in South West Wales to THRIVE.

South Wales as a whole is experiencing a huge boom in opportunities, particularly in the creative sector and in the Cardiff area. It’s exciting to see the growth, but it might be that South West Wales isn’t quite getting it’s fair share of activity, so what can we do to strengthen the sector here?

Catch up on the full recording below, or review the notes from this event:

 

Meeting Highlights & Notes

To set the scene and connect to a sense of purpose, we asked the question: Why does this matter to you, and why does it feel important? Here are some key points people shared:

  • Creative industries often offer work-based qualifications. One of these is Educ8 Training, which offers work-based qualifications fully funded by the Welsh Government.

  • Creativity can be a great initiative to get involved in collaboration, the amount of resources is amazing. You can achieve a lot by working together. The creative sector can be a very lonely place if you work alone.
  • No business succeeds on its own. You need clients. We all feed off each other. We thrive off of relationships with others. Understanding what’s out there is a fundamental part of being a successful business.
  • How can we bring creativity into our working practices to drive higher productivity and a happier workforce?
  • The beauty of Swansea and West Wales is that we’re prepared to work together and network. Going east towards Cardiff may be a bit more competitive. Collaboration and working as a community makes us stronger.
  • We should understand what’s needed to encourage students who study here to stay and work within the region.  Keeping talent here in our region and encouraging them recognise the opportunities on our doorstep is important.
  • We all need creativity, no matter what line of work we’re in.

Participants

A wide range of organisations and businesses were represented at this event:

  • Art of Balanced Life
  • Bauer Media
  • Bevan Buckland
  • Big Ideas Wales
  • Cwm Arian
  • Dynamic Development
  • e-development
  • Educ8 Training
  • elysium Gallery
  • Focus Futures
  • Future Clarity
  • Future Generations Commissioner’s Office Wales
  • Green Light Technology Solutions
  • Haverhub
  • iNNOVATION Photography
  • Omni Marketing Agency
  • Planed
  • Plantasia Tropical Zoo
  • Severn Screen
  • Solar Wheel
  • Stori Cymru
  • Swansea Council
  • Swansea University
  • Taliesin
  • Urban Foundry
  • UWTSD
  • Waters Creative
  • World Horizons
  • Yr Egin

Regeneration

    • The new Swansea city developments indicate that the city is successfully developing during a time and climate where other areas are neglected.
    • Lots of opportunities can come out of regeneration and developments across the region.
    • The creative sector has historically been a purpose of regeneration. We need to be careful not to stifle creativity or not lead it down a forced path. Grassroots projects can make a tangible difference.

    Education, Skills and Work

    • Educ8 Training offers work-based training, fully funded by the Welsh Government.
    • There’s more desire for young people to take a risk and set up their businesses.
    • Based in SA1, UWTSD’s Innovation Matrix offers an incubation space for student start-ups. The opportunities that the Innovation Matrix offers are vital for growing enterprises. The Innovation Matrix also offers the highest rate of start-ups in the UK.
    • Big Ideas Wales supports people aged 16-25 years of age.  They can assist in supporting young people through their entrepreneurship journey.
    • CEMET supports businesses with access to R&D, software, and hardware development. They have extensive experience with a wide range of creative and innovative technologies.
    • Focus Futures, delivered by Business in Focus, provides a mixture of support, guidance and opportunity around self-employment and enterprise. 

    “Networking is a big thing. We need to start shouting about creative entrepreneurs and start to show that artists aren’t just walking around with a flat cap and a dog on a string. The beauty of Swansea and West Wales is that we’re prepared for collaboration.”

    Collaboration

      • Cartref Creative is a newly launched creative network that covers the region.

      • We’re seeing local businesses use one another more, keeping the spending in the region.

      • Taliesin with Elysium has been hosting the Swansea Young Musicians Network, providing a space for young people to engage and connect through music. 

      • A lot is happening at Yr Egin involving film and digital media. You can view the upcoming events here.

      “If our creative sector was thriving it wouldn’t be so hard to find creative talent/professionals for our business.”

      If our creative sector was thriving…what would that look like for you?

      • More opportunities becoming available for young talent.
      • Less struggles with finding commercially-based staff with creative talent in the region.
      • There would be more creatives in the board room.
      • Get creatives who use co-working spaces more involved in the planning and design stages of projects.
      • Everyone would be working together.
      • There would be a Universal Creative Income. 
      • People would develop a sense of place, find value in their communities, and feel a sense of pride for staying after graduation to be a part of a thriving creative community.
      • Every town should have a creative quarter where creativity can thrive!  Large disused buildings could become hubs for creative people to come together and collaborate. 
      • We need to feel like collaborators and friends rather than competitors.
      • There’s a relationship that happens between local businesses and creatives.  The cafes, record shops, galleries, etc are all places for creativity to happen.
      • Creatives don’t always know how to make an income using their talent, there should be more opportunities for people to learn how to sell themselves.

      Thank you to everyone who attended! We found this meeting to be a very exciting discussion about the year ahead, and we believe that South West Wales is full of opportunities. We will be going in-depth across a range of topics going forward, so please click here to see future events.

      If you are a 4theRegion member and would like to speak at future events, please email lydia@4theregion.org.uk.