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Date added: 18 March 2010

Swindon business quick off the blocks for 2010 

Regus sees a 75% increase in enquiries from new entrepreneurs
Over the last month, Regus, the leading global provider of innovative workspace solutions, has seen a massive rise in flexible office space enquiries in Swindon.
The 75% rise is significantly above the UK national average of 20%, with the increase attributed to the burgeoning enterprise community in the city, demonstrating how the economic climate can actually have a motivating effect for people considering going it alone.
Seeing an increase at the start of the year is also a good indicator of potential business growth within the city in 2010.
46% of employees questioned said they would like to set up their own business, but 28% cited high start up costs as the reason they have not yet gone it alone.
The continuing tough job market appears to be motivating the regionsí potential entrepreneurs, with 43% of people questioned saying they would set up their own business if they lost their current job.
ďOur study combined with the huge rise in enquiries paints a very positive picture of business life in the city. Itís encouraging to see such strong entrepreneurial drive in Swindon, and Regus aims to provide new businesses with the flexible and affordable workspace solutions they need to succeed,Ē commented Celia Donne, Regional Director of Regus, comments
To further assist entrepreneurs in the city, Regus has compiled five top tips for small business owners on how to maximise their long-term success, stand out from the crowd and minimise potential financial risks:
  1. Focus on what you do best and outsource the rest Administrative and support services are necessary for any business, but the costs and time expended managing these services may not be worth the investment for a small organisation. Focus your attention on what your business is really about - rather than hiring an office manager or worrying about which internet provider to select, let someone else handle this and concentrate on what your business does best.
  2. Project a professional image on par with your services A professional image is crucial to any entrepreneurís success. Potential investors and customers judge you on how you present yourself and your business. One critically important element of a professional presentation is an impeccable office where you can entertain potential clients and investors. Having a prestigious address can also add a level of prestige to your business that is hard to put a price on, but leasing traditional space there may still be cost prohibitive.
  3. Spend wisely Whether striking out on your own for the first time or maintaining an established small business, your companyís long-term success is dependant on making more than you spend. Spending wisely doesnít mean cutting corners; paying your employees well and your bills on time is important, but spend only on essentials: good employees, technology, marketing; not on that really great, but expensive, espresso maker.
  4. Grow wisely As the world becomes increasingly interconnected, having presence outside of the UK may be an important part of your businessís growth. However, expanding your business, whether nationally or globally, can be an expensive and risky undertaking. Make sure that you have researched new markets extensively and are confident you have the tools necessary to succeed in these uncharted waters. Often it is best to dip one toe in first before you take the plunge. Try a part time or virtual office for several months and set strict goals for performance before setting up shop permanently. 
  5.  Network, Network, Network Meeting other entrepreneurs is critical to creating lasting business relationships and expanding your business. Whether itís joining groups of other entrepreneurs or using social networks to connect with business leaders in your industry, networking is a great way to expand your professional contacts, gather advice, information, and raise your professional profile.
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