Enterprise Nation

With almost one third of women saying practical support such as digital skills training would really help them when starting a business, delivering and creating a noise around our online and offline training programme will give women access to a wealth of free resources that they can use whenever it is convenient and digest at their own pace.
As founder of the UK's most active small business network, I hear from and meet with small businesses every day. In the decade in which Enterprise Nation has been in business, we've reported that these small businesses feel confident and optimistic about the future. But I'm beginning to doubt that premise.
Small firms that export are confident, introduce new products, are more likely to seek investment and have significantly higher growth expectations than companies that don't.
Last month I became the Government's new Crown Representative for small and medium sized businesses. My role will be to work with government to help it achieve its target of £1 in every £3 being spent with small business by 2020.
The big six energy firms have £204million held in closed business accounts and so far, no decisions have been made as to what to do with it...
Do you know which political party will offer the best package of policies to support Britain's growing army of small businesses over the next five years? There are now record numbers of small firms in the UK, they account for as much as 96 per cent of the UK private sector, generating around a third of private sector turnover.
The British start-up culture has evolved to such an extent that we're now Europe's most entrepreneurial nation - and the fourth best in the world according to the Global Entrepreneurship Index.
A little while ago reports of the UK's entrepreneurial efforts in the face of start-up giants like the US, were, well, a little mediocre. It was rather like reading an end of year report which said 'must try harder'.
Britain's booming army of 2.9m homepreneurs spend more than £40billion of their earnings in their own local economy and are on track to create over five million freelance jobs, a major new report from Enterprise Nation and Direct Line for Business has revealed today.
With over two billion people online across the globe, this represents a big opportunity for small business.
Today the Queen announced the long-awaited Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill which offers hope to new brands
According to the Government's own statistics one in ten domestic properties are now home to a business and these 2.95 million home based firms are contributing £243 billion to the British economy.
Next year, a new Government initiative will be announced that will deliver £30m worth of Growth Vouchers to small business in a bid to help them grow.
Realising the entrepreneur within could be the act of turning your passion or hobby into a business, spotting a gap in the market and fund-raising to fill it, or coming up with a new way of working or product line for a company in which you're an employee. The entrepreneurial instinct, I believe, is in everyone - the only thing that differs is what you decide to do with it.
So, large companies, I hope you won't mind that this post is written for you. It's my thoughts on how, in five steps, you can become a favourable brand to millions of small businesses across Britain. So listen up!
What we need to tackle now is making the infrastructure and cultural change that will make growth and long-term development easier and more achievable for start-ups and micro businesses.
As the number of new companies created in the UK continues to increase, we're seeing businesses start-up based on a passion, hobby or skill, that can be turned into a way of making a living.
Until recently, pop-up shops have had a mixed reputation. The 'everything must go' hastily scrawled in white spray paint, or uninspiring charity shops are the oft-criticised and cited version most commonly associated with the re-use of empty shops - but more recently the pop-up concept has taken an intellectual leap.
'The Next Big Thing?' is a series of blogs that will focus on small businesses and startup brands in the U.K. Whether they