Printed Date: 28/05/2023

GLL Libraries Support Business Start Ups

GLL libraries across south London will host a group of successful entrepreneurs and business experts as they deliver a series of FREE training sessions, seminars, competitions and mentoring events to celebrate Start Up Business Week 2023.

The week will consist of a mixture of conferences, webinars, expert-led workshops, training sessions, business panels, business mentoring opportunities and a business competition.

Guest speakers will include Rachel Barnham from the Federation of Small Business – who will advise on personal and business finance, Gerard Anthony the Markets and Street Trading manager at the Royal Borough of Greenwich Council who will explain how to become a successful street trader and marketing expert George Boateny will offer tips on how to conquer social media. 

The week of FREE events is open to all and will take place within libraries across Bromley, Greenwich and Wandsworth, while some sessions will also be available to attend virtually.  All the events are designed to inspire and support the capital’s small business community.

A highlight of the week will be the final of a Dragon’s Den style Start Up Business Pitch Competition.  In its second year, the competition allows businesses to pitch for an investment along with receiving useful feedback from an array of expert judges.

The competition final will see six Start Up businesses deliver a live pitch to a team of expert judges and successful small business owners.  The winner will receive £2,000 to invest in their business, while runners up with benefit from £1,000 and £500 of investment. 

The week’s full programme of activities comprises:

‘Money Monday’ – Personal and Business Finance Show

This event will support attendees to better understand how to improve their personal finance and business finance.  It will include as session delivered by Barclays Bank on how to harness digital tools to reduce the cost of living.

‘How to become a successful market and street food trader.’

Advice on how to become a successful market and street food trader, and the necessary paperwork and licenses that are required. There will also be a local market/street food trader to speak about their experiences as a business owner.

‘How to win local government contracts’

An insightful information session for businesses who want to successfully tender for government/local authority contracts.

‘How to successfully get your product into stores and run a successful market stall’.

This webinar will inform and empower attendees about the realities of getting their products into a retail shop or centre, or acquiring a kiosk or market stall, and how to ensure that it is a success.

‘Conquering Social Media Day’

This event will comprise workshops, talks, and one-to-one consultations focused on demystifying social media, providing marketing tips, and helping entrepreneurs create quality content.

‘How to launch a side hustle business’

With the rise in the cost of living, many people are starting side hustles to boost their incomes. This webinar will discuss how you research and launch a side hustle business, the mindset required, side hustle ideas in addition to covering the tax implications of this.

Business Mentoring Morning

This ‘speed’ mentoring morning will enable attendees to gain advice and ask questions to a range of business experts covering topics such as: pricing your product or service, marketing, sales, sustainability, business planning, accountancy.

Business Panel Event– “Starting and running a business in a post-pandemic world.’

The panel will include both start-ups and established businesses who will discuss what it is like to start and run a business in a post-pandemic world and will cover areas such as changes in consumer behaviour, increases in operating costs and challenges around securing venture capital investment.

Introduction to Intellectual Property – how to protect your business idea

This workshop will introduce attendees to intellectual property concepts such as patents, trademarks, registered designs and copyright.

Start Up Business Pitch Final

The Start Up Business Pitch Final will consist of six small business finalists, who will deliver a business pitch in front of a panel of judges and a live audience, to win cash investment to develop their business.  The winner of the competition will win £2,000, 2nd place £1,000 and third place £500 to invest in their respective businesses.

A range of small business support services are available year-round within libraries in Bromley, Greenwich and Wandsworth.  The libraries are registered as local centres for British Library’s Business and IP Centre services.

Commenting on Bromley Business Week, Martin Stone Sector Libraries Manager for GLL the charitable social enterprise behind Start Up Business 2023 said: “We are delighted to be able to offer such a wide ranging programme, delivered by real experts in their fields alongside successful entrepreneurs who can share their personal experiences of business start up.  With sessions located across south London and some available as webinars, everyone should be able to access this wealth of information and benefit from it.

Liam Carlton, founder of small business Pit Pro added: ““Starting a business is awesome, it can also be lonely and terrifying and Start Up Bromley have been there with me through that journey. They've guided me through some of the more challenging minefields and helped me to improve some of the key soft-skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur. The team’s passion for what they do shines through whenever you see them.”

Bianca Sapra Grant founder of Parent Power commented: “The support that the British Library BIPC and Start Up Greenwich team has provided me with has been invaluable.  It’s included assistance with writing successful grant funding applications, helpful introductions that have resulted in strong business partnerships, and useful workshops and 121’s.  It’s improved my marketing, confidence, and other business skills immeasurably, and this has enabled my business to progress from a start up to one that’s expanding quickly.”

For more information and to sign up to the free events visit:

Start Up Business Week is managed by charitable social enterprise GLL and provides support to aspiring entrepreneurs and new businesses in the London boroughs of Bromley, Greenwich and Wandsworth.

Last year, Bromley's Start Up Business Week was opened by BBC's Emily Maitlis.


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