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LEP funding helps Skipton business raise its profile worldwide

A Craven business has been helped to expand into worldwide markets with funding from the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP).

The £3,210 grant from the LEP's Skills Service is being used by Skipton-based Norvap to enhance its customer service, develop its marketing strategy, and expand its internal management capabilities, as it expands into new markets.

Norvap, which was established in 2011, designs and manufactures veterinary and medical equipment such as vaporisers and anaesthesia machines. The company already supplies a number of companies across the globe, but has taken the next step in its expansion plan which has raised its profile further.

With companies requesting specialist and complex products, Norvap has recognised a need to invest in its staff's knowledge and customer service skills, as well as the business's overall marketing strategy to respond to these requests.

Claire Hodgson, HR and office manager at Norvap, said: "As our business is constantly expanding, we realised that the most important step for us to take is to invest in our staff, to ensure that we can provide specialist advice to new customers.

"The grant from the LEP's Skills Service will allow us to reach our full potential, as we'll have the opportunity to train our staff to the highest level of customer service, and we'll also be able to implement an internal management scheme that supports our workforce."

Sharon Sunter, Economic Development Manager at Craven District Council, which works with the LEP to support local businesses, said: "Norvap are a great example of how this funding can be used to drive local companies forward. We know there are other Craven businesses that could benefit from this funding and we would urge others to come forward and apply for grants to help up-skill their workforce."

Stephanie Burras CBE, Chair of the LEP's Employment and Skills Panel and Chief Executive of Ahead Partnership, said: "We're delighted that we've been able to give Norvap the support that it needs to reach its financial aims with funding from the Skills Service.

"With grants of between £500 and £50,000 available to businesses to put towards training, employers have the opportunity to work with a team of expert skills advisors, discuss their long term growth plans and skills needs, and put together a robust training plan for their staff.

"The Skills Service is part of a wider LEP offering that helps businesses to reach their growth targets. 

"Offering a comprehensive service to businesses, the team of advisors support employers to complete paperwork, source appropriate training provision and submit an application for funding. The LEP is dedicated to ensuring local businesses primed for growth have the skills to succeed."

Funding is available for a limited time. To find out if your business is eligible and to apply, please visit: www.the-lep.com/skillsservice