Aspiring entrepreneurs are being assisted by a new project which helps local people to generate business ideas and progress these ideas through to start-up stage.

The D2 Business Starter Programme is funded by Derby City Council and Derbyshire County Council to support potential local entrepreneurs to start a business. The support is being delivered in a variety of locations across Derby and Derbyshire and includes workshops, events and one-to-one coaching with qualified and experienced business coaches.

The project delivery began in January 2017 and has already engaged over 140 people and created four new businesses. The focus of the programme is to support the beneficiaries through the idea generation process, market testing and working towards a sustainable business plan.

Feedback from the participants has been very positive about the support they’ve received to date:

Input was great, but even better was the networking and bouncing off other group members.

I found the knowledge of the people running this course useful. Always able to answer your questions. Really, really helpful.

Brought together the most important aspects of business.

Surpassed my expectations. Excellent facilities. I really enjoyed the course and have learnt so much. I am feeling better equipped to move onto the next stage.

The East Midlands Chamber of Commerce was selected via a tendering exercise to deliver the service over three years, until end September 2019.

Councillor Martin Rawson, Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Economy at Derby City Council said:

We are delighted to be supporting this project which will create 150 new businesses by unlocking the entrepreneurial potential of our residents.  Small businesses are vital to our local economy and many of the participants in this programme will go on to become employers in the future.

Derbyshire County Council’s Strategic Director for Economy, Transport and Communities Mike Ashworth said:

Today’s start-up business is tomorrow’s major player. We welcome the opportunity to help new businesses get off the ground in Derbyshire and continue to grow and create jobs.

Paul Stuart, East Midlands Chamber’s Head of Enterprise, said:

This is a very exciting scheme which we are confident will create new businesses and encourage entrepreneurship from the more deprived communities in Derby and Derbyshire.

If you would like to develop ideas for your own business you can find more information and book a place at