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Innovation centre brings £1.2m lift for local economy

Posted onPosted on 11th Oct

Mansfield Innovation Centre has helped to drive an economic boost of more than £1.2m for the area by enabling local businesses to access grant funding, create new jobs, and benefit from intensive business coaching and support.

In the past six months the centre’s innovation director, David Smith (above), has helped 10 of its resident businesses successfully secure 13 grants from local and regional funds, totalling more than £120,000. He has also delivered more than 150 hours of intensive one-to-one business coaching to centre customers.

The grants have helped businesses buy manufacturing machinery, IT equipment and infrastructure, CRM systems, new websites, software, and other business tools to help them grow, and access marketing services and business consultancy. Much of this funding has been spent with local providers, helping to keep the money circulating in Mansfield’s economy.

More than 20 new jobs will be created as a result of the grant funding and support, while five existing roles will be safeguarded. When taken together, the activities have helped create an estimated £1.2m of economic impact for the local area.

David said: “We’re delighted to have been able to support so many great businesses in Mansfield Innovation Centre over the past six months, helping them to secure grant funding and giving them the tools and knowledge they need to realise their growth potential.

“The results of our efforts speak for themselves and will have a significant impact on the local economy as we head into the second half of the year.

“Providing intensive support is a big part of what we do at Mansfield Innovation Centre.

“As well as providing high-quality office space for growing local businesses, we also aim to provide all our customers with a bespoke package of support to help them achieve their goals and overcome any issues or challenges they may be facing.

“This includes intensive one-to-one coaching and mentoring to help businesses develop the strategies they need to support every stage of their growth, as well as practical support to access grant funding and build connections with businesses and support organisations.”

The centre provides a base to more than 30 businesses. It offers fully-serviced offices and workshops, a virtual office facility, hot desk area, and meeting and conference rooms. Managed by Oxford Innovation Space, customers also benefit from a package of support and coaching tailored to each business’s needs and growth aims.

One of the businesses to benefit from the support is Mansfield Bi-Folding Doors, part of the Integra Windows Group, which offers a one-stop service for aluminium bi-folding and sliding patio doors, and aluminium windows, to trade, DIY and retail customers.

The firm became a customer at Mansfield Innovation Centre in 2021 when its managing director, Michael Irwin, was looking for additional space to grow the business.

Michael has benefitted from several coaching sessions from David, who has also helped support two successful grant funding bids, and an application under the Kickstart scheme to recruit a new young member of staff.

Michael said: “The support we’ve received from David and the team since joining Mansfield Innovation Centre has been fantastic. We’ve been able to successfully apply for three pots of grant funding, which wouldn’t have been possible without David’s support.

“The coaching we’ve received has also been invaluable. As a small business with ambitions to grow, it’s been great to work with someone who understands what we’re looking to achieve, can advise on the direction and strategy we should take, and just be an impartial sounding board to bounce ideas off.”

For further information on Mansfield Innovation Centre, visit or call 01623 600600.