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EXETER’S LOCAL BUSINESSES IN SPOTLIGHT OF SMALL BUSINESS SATURDAY CAMPAIGN

Small businesses in Exeter highlighted as Small Business Saturday’s roadshow campaigns for supporting the UK’s entrepreneurs

22 NOVEMBER 2023: The importance of supporting small businesses was driven home yesterday, when entrepreneurs across the South West were spotlighted by the national Small Business Saturday roadshow. 

With an aim to support small businesses facing persistent economic challenges, ‘The Tour’ visited the city to support and celebrate the area’s local firms. 

The team visited several small businesses in the South West area, learning more about the city’s entrepreneurs and their ambitions for 2024. This included meeting Charlie and Ryan, who run Big Bakes Bakery together.

‘The Tour’ – which set off from Scotland earlier this month – is travelling across the UK for a month as part of the official countdown to Small Business Saturday. Taking place on the first Saturday of December each year the campaign celebrates small business success, encouraging consumers to ‘shop local’ and to support businesses in their communities.

Other visits on the day included toot garook, Daily Bowl, Leaf Street, and Hyde and Seek. And there was a flurry of activity on social media, where interviews with local leaders including Jude Durham, Justine Hyde, and Dan Taylor, were live streamed.

Dan Taylor, founder of The Grocer On The Green said: “So great to be involved for a second year running with the Small Business Saturday Tour and lovely to see the team again when they visited Exeter yesterday! Small businesses (and our customers) continue to face such challenging times, but it was super to have the opportunity to shout about why we matter so much & the service we provide to the public.”

Once again supported by BT Skills for Tomorrow, ‘The Tour’ is visiting 23 towns and cities across the UK during November. After its stop in Exeter, it will be travelling to Bournemouth, Brighton, and Whitstable in the coming days before finishing off in London ahead of Small Business Saturday on 2 December.

‘The Tour’ will make use of electric vehicles to reduce emissions and reflect the sustainable switches many small business owners are making as part of their vital role in the race to net zero. This will include touring with a state-of-the-art eco-friendly electric bike – the Electro Ride X – from innovative London electric motorbike company, Stirling Eco. 

Michelle Ovens CBE, Director of Small Business Saturday, said: “We’re so glad that we could visit Exeter and celebrate all the fantastic businesses in the area. I’m so inspired for the year ahead after chatting to so many entrepreneurs, and very happy that we got to shine a light on their successes. 

“Small business owners make up such an important part of the UK economy and their local community here in Exeter, so it’s great to celebrate them with the Small Business Saturday campaign.”

Many entrepreneurs from across the region also joined business mentoring and workshops, as part of an online training and skills support programme, which is being offered free by the Small Business Saturday campaign throughout November. 

Chris Sims, Managing Director Small and Medium Enterprise at BT, said: “Small Business Saturday is a fantastic initiative that empowers entrepreneurs to tackle the biggest challenges they are facing today. This year small businesses can access specialist mentoring and support, giving them tailored guidance on issues ranging from effective marketing to cyber security.”

“As the tour enters its second decade, we are proud to be partnering with Small Business Saturday on this initiative again through our Skills for Tomorrow program, which has helped

over one million entrepreneurs grow their small businesses with free digital skills training.”

Now in its second decade in the UK, Small Business Saturday is a grassroots, non-commercial campaign, that was originally founded by American Express in the U.S. in 2010. The brand remains the principal supporter in the UK.

On Small Business Saturday customers across the UK go out and support all types of small businesses, online, in offices and in stores. Many small businesses take part in the day by hosting events and offering promotions. 

To get involved in ‘The Tour’ locally, or book virtual one-to-one mentoring sessions and workshops, small businesses should visit https://smallbusinesssaturdayuk.com/the-tour.