Entrepreneurial talent in South of Scotland to be nurtured by exciting new partnership

A new collaboration is underway to identify and nurture entrepreneurial talent to help boost the South of Scotland economy. 

South of Scotland Enterprise (SOSE) and Scottish company creation programme Converge have joined forces on the new partnership.

Converge is Scotland’s largest company creation programme, dedicated to assisting entrepreneurial students, graduates and staff within the Scottish university sector in getting to market.

Since 2011, the organisation has helped create over 300 new companies and trained over 500 aspiring entrepreneurs.

The first action of the collaboration is the creation of an enterprise executive role for the South of Scotland within Converge, co-funded by SOSE, which will aim to work with both organisations to tap into the surplus entrepreneurial talent.

University of the West of Scotland (UWS) have agreed to host the enterprise executive, with the post holder providing entrepreneurship support for all institutions in the region.

Anyone interesting in applying for the role with Converge can apply now by visiting https://bit.ly/3cqwYsC

The South of Scotland’s entrepreneurial thinking is highlighted by data which shows the region has 508 businesses per 10,000 people, higher than the Scottish average of 391.

SOSE’s Chief Executive Jane Morrison-Ross said:

“In these uncertain times, it is more important than ever that the South plays an active role in Scotland becoming one of the best countries in the world to start and grow business.

“We know there is entrepreneurial talent ready to be discovered across the South of Scotland, and by working with Converge we can find it and help build entrepreneurial mindsets across the region.

“By doing so, it will help create wider benefits such as the creation of skilled jobs, supporting young people, higher wages, drive increased productivity and encourage innovation.”

Dr Claudia Cavalluzzo, Executive Director at Converge added:  

“Converge is already growing and strengthening its presence across the north-east and west of Scotland.

“The South of Scotland has its own rich history of entrepreneurial spirit and success, and as a business start-up and spinout location, the numbers show us it is becoming more popular all the time.

“Although there might not be as many students based in this part of the country as other areas of Scotland, many either return to the region, or choose to move here to launch their own business .

“That is a market we really want to help nurture, with expert on-the-ground support.”

Johnny Mone, Head of Business Innovation at the University of the West of Scotland added:

“At UWS, we believe in unlocking the untapped innovation in all students to help transform their lives and the lives of our communities.

“Inclusion is one of our most important values which we share with Converge and SOSE and this partnership will enable more students in the south of Scotland to access the programmes and support that will help them make an even greater economic, social, and cultural contribution to the region.

“Partnerships are crucial to create a more entrepreneurial culture in education institutions. At UWS, we have developed a Student Innovation Hub in collaboration with Converge and others and this new partnership will help extend these and other programmes to all students in the South of Scotland.”