A NEW e-guide for firms in Bury and Bolton has been endorsed by the boss of a leading food supplier.

Support experts at the GC Business Growth Hub have an online tool - ‘Unleashing Your Innovation’ - which reveals that from October 2015 to April 2021 the Hub provided 2,600 SMEs with innovation specific support across the city region.

So far it has helped to create 467 jobs and introduce 132 new products to the market over the same period.

The team, through the guide, support SMEs across the region to innovate, in sectors including manufacturing, health, digital and creative.

And one beneficiary has been Waterfold Park based Dunster Farm, which used the guide to develop an e-commerce offer during lockdown.

Company chiefs are now working with Manchester Metropolitan University on a 'knowledge transfer partnership' to further improve productivity.

Managing director Hannah Barlow said: “Working with the hub has been the catalyst to potentially transforming our business. The Hub has so many resources available for businesses.”

Bolton-based Ease for You, has produced an innovative medical gel cool pack and was able to adapt during the pandemic to make hand sanitise, with the hub's help.

Yvonne Grady, the hub's innovation head, added: "Our region leads the way with innovation and our team is here to help businesses get new ideas moving.

“The pandemic hasn’t stopped innovation and our new e-guide is a great place to start if you are wondering how to challenge the status quo.

“Our support is available for established small to medium sized businesses in Bolton, Bury and across the city region.

“We understand the difficulties in developing products and services, and we are here to help businesses overcome these challenges, make changes and grow.”

She says the eight-page guide highlights factors firms need to consider and the facilities and fully-funded support that are available to them.

The guide is available at www.businessgrowthhub.com/innovation and the team can be contacted at BGHinnovation@growthco.uk