Smarter working initiative to help West Midlands SMEs improve energy efficiency

Business news

Monday 08 April 2013

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Press Team
press.mea@coventry.ac.uk


An initiative spearheaded by Coventry University Enterprises (CUE) is set to promote a new business support programme next week at ‘Sustainability Live’, the UK’s biggest energy, water and waste efficiency event.

West Midlands SMEs will be invited by CUE’s Smarter Working West Midlands (SWWM) team to take advantage of its European Regional Development Fund backed programme which aims to help them cut costs, improve their energy efficiency and use waste in a more eco-friendly way.

Benefits of the new support programme include free building surveys to identify ways to cut energy costs, and – for companies with significant quantities of organic waste – a free process survey with recommendations on how best to manage the waste to save money.

The SWWM team has engaged the services of two specialist energy management companies – Stourbridge-based Briar Associates and the Organic Resource Agency in Great Malvern – to deliver this support, which will normally include two days of free assistance plus implementation advice.

The new programme will sit alongside a number of other business support initiatives in the SWWM portfolio, including support for organisations looking to change their work environment to improve productivity, and the provision of ‘hot desk’ facilities for SMEs to use free of charge to assess the effectiveness of location independent working.

Smarter Working West Midlands will be exhibiting at the ‘Energy from Waste’ expo at the Sustainability Live event at the NEC in Birmingham from Tuesday 16th to Thursday 18th April, and will be offering visitors the chance to enter a draw to win a free smart meter to use in their business premises.

Henry Jerwood, who manages the Smarter Working West Midlands project through Coventry University Enterprises, said:

Universities are playing an increasingly critical role in supporting businesses at a time when the global economy is fragile and pressures are mounting to demonstrate sustainable credentials.

This initiative is all about engaging with small and medium enterprises in the West Midlands to help them improve their efficiency and productivity, and in turn boost the local economy. We’re expecting to see a significant level of interest at the Sustainability Live event next week, and we look forward to opening up new opportunities for businesses across the region.

To learn more about what the Smarter Working West Midlands initiative offers in the way of support for regional businesses, visit www.smarterworkingwm.co.uk or email info@smarterworkingwm.co.uk.

For further information, please contact Alex Roache, external press and media relations officer, Coventry University, on 024 7679 5050 or email alex.roache@coventry.ac.uk.

European Regional Development Fund
The Department for Communities and Local Government is the managing authority for the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) Programme which runs from 2007 to 2013. This is one of the funds established by the European Commission to help local areas stimulate their economic development. The West Midlands ERDF Programme has been allocated €400 million to invest in projects which will support local businesses and create jobs. Priority areas and themes for the West Midlands are: Innovation and Research & Development, Enterprise Development, Sustainable Urban Development, and Inter-Regional Activity. Visit www.communities.gov.uk/erdf for further information.