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Understanding your Local Enterprise Partnership

Who we are

Thames Valley Berkshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) is a business-led partnership. We have, to date, allocated £140m of public funds (UK and EU) to deliver economic growth initiatives in Thames Valley Berkshire. Alongside London, Thames Valley Berkshire is the UK’s economic powerhouse contributing over £34bn in GVA to the economy. We have a crucial role as an engine of growth, both for the area and the UK, and focus our interventions to add value where they can help enterprise to flourish.

What we do

We contribute to the sustainable economic growth of TVB through the implementation of a Strategic Economic Plan, which has four programmes:

Enterprise & Innovation

The success of your business is essential to TVB and the UK economy. The LEP has funded initiatives to improve the business support available across the area, including the Thames Valley Berkshire Funding Escalator, a Business Growth Hub where all companies can start their growth journey and ConnectTVT, where ideas from tech start-ups can be shared and flourish.

Employability & Skills

To achieve the highest levels of education in our workforce, we are helping to develop five new Solutions Labs, which will equip young people with the STEM skills needed. And through a Skills Priority Statement, identify where skills deficits are proving to be a barrier to economic growth and where intervention can have the greatest impact.

International

We continue to promote the area’s key growth sectors and its value proposition in order to encourage international businesses to invest and grow their supply chains in TVB.

Infrastructure

We prioritise infrastructure that supports growth through investment in transport improvements to enhance connectivity (£16.6m has been allocated for 2015/16); commission evidence to underpin strategic infrastructure such as airports and rail links to airports; and invest in digital connectivity (92% of broadband coverage achieved in 2015 and further enhancements taking it to 95% by 2017).

"TVB is the UK's economic powerhouse contributing over
£34 billion in GVA to the economy"

 

Delivering national growth, locally

Eight Fundamentals

Mission – To bring about sustainable economic growth of the Thames Valley Berkshire (TVB) sub region through the implementation of a Strategic Economic Plan (SEP) [for TVB]. [Sometimes leading; sometimes co-ordinating; sometimes as advocate; sometimes delivering; always basing interventions on evidence provided in support of the Plan]

Goal – A net GVA uplift of well over £700m by 2021 to sustain the area’s status as the most productive sub region in the UK. This translates into an average growth rate for the sub region – in real terms – of around 3% per annum.

Vision – The vibrancy of our business community will be internationally envied. The ambition and creativity of our established businesses will be energised through strong, knowledge-rich networks. Our workforce will be the lifeblood of our economy: young people will be inspired and older workers valued. Our infrastructure will match the scale of our ambitionand potential. And people will choose Thames Valley Berkshire as the place to live and work.

Strategic Economic Plan (SEP) – Its overarching priority is to secure better access to talented people and bright ideas, and to use both more effectively. Its six key objectives are to:

I. Use better those who are already in the workforce

II. Inspire the next generation and build aspirations and ambition

III. Ensure that economic potential is not restricted by labour supply

IV. Ensure that knowledge is effectively commercialised and grown within TVB

V. Strengthen networks and invest in the ‘soft wiring’ to use ideas better

VI. Make TVB’s towns genuine hubs in the ideas economy

Funding the SEP – Through:

I. A Growth Deal with the government worth £107m over the period 2015 to 2021. This is conditional on the LEP meeting 29 commitments set out in the Deal

II. Its £15m Growing Place Fund; a revolving loan fund

III. Its investment strategy for over £21m of EU funds allocated to TVB

Mandate – TVB LEP was endorsed by government on 28 October 2010. It has no statutory powers. However, TVB’s six unitary authorities have all approved the Strategic Economic Plan and are embedded in the LEP governance structure alongside the community sector, education sector (HE & FE) and the business organisations (CBI, IoD, FSB & Chamber).The LEP will co-ordinate the efforts of these partners in support of the SEP, whilst avoiding duplication of their individual agendas and activities.

Governance – TVB LEP is a company limited by guarantee with eight staff. It acts as the engine of a wider strategic partnership, which is chaired and led by senior business figures. As custodian of public funds it operates within an Accountability & Assurance Framework, and is accountable to the Department for Communities & Local Government.

Geography - Berkshire at the centre of the wider Thames Valley.

Funding for Thames Valley Berkshire

Local Growth Funds: £107m
The Growth Deal with Government brings almost £107m of investment to the sub region. The objective over the lifetime of the Deal (2015-2021), is to create up to 20,000 jobs, see 12,000 new homes built and generate £40m in private investment. We are committed to the Social Value Act in maximising the impact of this Deal.

European Structural and Investment Funds: £25m
An allocation of £25m of European Structural and Investment Funds over the period 2014-2020. With match funding this represents a seven-year £50m investment plan for the sub region.

Growing Places Fund: £15m
Awarded £15m of Growing Places Fund by HM Government to promote jobs and economic growth in the area. This is structured as a recycling loan fund.