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How to Start a Business in Harlow

Free start-up resources and useful local contacts.

Improve your chances of success!

How to Start a Business in Harlow

Starting a business in Harlow

If you are thinking about starting a business in Harlow or would like to grow your existing business, we would love to help you.

Start Your Own Business in Harlow contains resources and the information that will help give your venture the best chance of success. It also highlights organisations who offer friendly advice and the services that you are likely to need as a new startup or local business owner.

Grants | Networking groups | Business advice | Mentoring | Co-working spaces

Starting a business in Harlow

Local help for startups

There is plenty of help for startups in Harlow but where can it be found?

Select classification:

Starting a Business in Harlow

Business advice and support

"Two heads are better than one."

Whether you have been trading for some time, are new to the market or are just thinking about starting a business of your own, it has been proven that your chances of success are considerably improved if you seek support from an experienced business advisor or mentor. You can find out more about both options at Business Advice in Harlow and Business Mentors in Harlow.

Funding and grants

Running out of money is one the most common reasons why businesses fail. This risk of this happening to can be avoided (or minimised) by careful planning and cashflow forecasting. If you need additional funds to start or keep your business going, you can learn more about your options and download our free funding factsheet at: Harlow Business Grants and Business Funding

Business networking

Does the idea of business networking fill you with delight or dread? Either way, it can be beneficial for both your business and you as an entrepreneur. See Business Networking in Harlow for details of local groups and our free Networking Factsheet.

Business premises

Working from home is appealing to many new business owners but not practical for many others. Even if you are running a business by yourself, you might like to consider the option of 'hot desking' or co-working in one of the many flexi-workspaces that have emerged in recent years. Find out more at: Harlow Co-Working and Business Premises.

Finding new customers

Paying customers are the lifeblood of any business. Knowing how to find, satisfy and retain them is vitally important and best achieved with the help of experts in the field.

Accountancy, tax and law

While starting a new business is very exciting, this should not disguide the fact that there are some very important legal responsibilities that must be considered. See: Bookkeeping, Accountancy, Financial Planning and Law

Local partners

We are happy to promote anyone who is prepared to offer friendly support to local start-ups.

Our local partners have been kind enough to help us and are keen to help you too.

Free Startup Resources

Getting it right from the start can help to prevent problems later.

To help you with this we have created a vast selection of resources and they are all completely free!

FREE startup workshops

If you are thinking about starting a business, our FREE three-hour ONLINE workshop is definitely for you!

Open to everyone, our sole aim is to increase your chances of success. We do that by explaining:

The reality of running a business; the most common pitfalls and how to avoid them; which legal status is likely to be most suitable; funding, grants and managing your money; business planning and cashflow forecasting; finding and keeping customers.

Free startup guide

Start Your Own Business in 2021

Download the 2024 edition of our Free Start Your Own Business guide

An interactive step-by-step guide which also includes all of the most important subjects covered in an easy-to-read way with links to useful online articles and relevant contacts.

The idea of starting your own business can be incredibly exciting and who can blame you for being tempted?

However, the sad truth is that far too many new enterprises fail in the early stages. Our aim is to make sure that you don’t become one of them.

This guide explains the key start-up subjects in simple English.

There is also plenty of help available in the area and much of it is free - please do make the most of it.

Read more about what our Free guide contains and how you can download it.
Starting a business in Harlow

Key Contacts in Harlow

'You don't know what you don't know' is a phrase that is so applicable to starting a new business.

Harlow is a great place for start-ups but your chances of success are dramatically improved if you make the most of the support that is available locally. Click on logos to visit their websites.

Design

SketchStar Studio
SketchStar Studio is a design studio based in Harlow. Catering for all your design needs, from branding and websites, to products and furniture.
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Office Services

The Office HQ
The Office HQ helps small business owners and start ups by carrying out tasks such as administration, marketing and bookkeeping. We are a small team of highly skilled and experienced UK Virtual Assistants who can hit the ground running and will free up your time so that you can concentrate on taking your business to the next level. No task is too big or small, whether its occasional invoicing, daily email management or helping with social media posts.
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Accountancy

McMillan Rose & Co - Chartered Certified Accountants
We are a qualified firm of accountants that are friendly, approachable, will deal with your queries quickly and at a reasonable price. Clients choose our firm over others as this is the level of service they receive. Check out our reviews. Changing Accountants always seems daunting so why not meet us first, without any pressure over a cup of tea or coffee, and then have time to yourself to decide if we are the right firm for you. You need to be able to rely on a firm you can trust and will get the job done within time constraints, thats where McMillan Rose are strongest as a firm of qualified Chartered Certified Accountants. If its advice on tax planning, including H M Revenue and Customs investigations, audit, limited company formation as well as bookkeeping, accounts, landlords rental statements, VAT and payroll services then McMillan Rose can provide those services and more. We have many clients in various different types of sectors, including: * contruction and building * solicitors and barristers * travel agents * technology * haulage * service industry * landlords * and, much more. Through giving the right advice when needed our clients have the confidence to expand their businesses when the time is right for them. Serious about your business? Then telephone us on 01245 326280 for a FREE meeting and parking to discuss how to increase your potential.
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Advice

Harlow Business Mentors
Harlow Business Mentors: Helping to make sense of business by providing free mentoring and workshops for new and emerging businesses situated in the M11 corridor region. Based in Harlow, Essex and established in autumn 2007, Harlow Business Mentors (HBM) is a venture between two local businessmen
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Marketing

Let's Do Marketing
Let’s Do Marketing is a subsidiary of Let’s Do Business Group that is here to help small businesses grow through marketing. Focussed on providing affordable and accessible support to new and small businesses, they offer consultancy and marketing services that can help you to achieve your big marketing ideas. Whether you’re just starting out with a brand new business or looking to grow, we can give you the guidance to create a marketing strategy that matches your goals. Let’s Do Marketing can also provide training to help you take control of your own marketing strategy, from learning new software and tools to creating award winning campaigns! Find out more about our services https://www.letsdomarketing.co.uk/ Want to chat about how Let’s Do Marketing can help you to level up your business? Get in touch at https://www.letsdomarketing.co.uk/contact or email us at hello@letsdomarketing.co.uk!
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Advice

South East Business Hub
The South East Business Hub (SEBH) is here to help your business on the path to growth and prosperity. SEBH can connect you with the services that match your business needs and help you make your mark in Englands most enterprising economy.SEBH is provided by the South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP), the business-led, public/private body established to drive economic growth across East Sussex, Essex, Kent, Medway, Southend and Thurrock.
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Communications

bubyli Internet Marketing
Affordable Websites We understand and appreciate the costs involved in starting a new business. That's why we spread the cost of your new website over a 12 month period, allowing you time to start generating revenue. The pandemic of 2020 changed the way in which we interact with businesses making a business website one of your most important assets. We can help you get your new business online and in front of your customers.
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Funding

Access business finance up to £150k
Let’s Do Business Finance offers funding to both start-up businesses and businesses wanting to grow and invest in their future. Start up finance We’re one of the official Business Support Partners of the British Business Bank and Start Up Loan Company. We can offer loans from £500 up to £25k with a fixed interest rate of 6% per annum, and that includes 12 months of free mentoring to help you get off to the best start. Could you be eligible? Find out more https://www.letsdobusinessfinance.co.uk/lets-start-up Business loans Let’s Do Business Finance are able to offer business loans to help established businesses to grow. We’re accredited lenders of the Recovery Loan Scheme under the British Business Bank, and we’re able to lend from £25,001 to £150,000 on terms from 3 months to 6 years. This business finance can be used to help you secure anything from new premises, equipment, and capital, and our team can help you to assess your cash flow and finances, build your marketing strategy and more with our built-in business support which is tailored to your needs. Want to learn more about business loans, and see if you’re eligible? Visit our website https://www.letsdobusinessfinance.co.uk/ or send us an enquiry https://www.letsdobusinessfinance.co.uk/contact-us
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Advice

Backing Essex Business
Fully funded by Essex County Council and delivered by business support organisation Let's Do Business Group, Backing Essex Business provides free support to help your business to grow through advice, access to finance and training. What areas of Essex are eligible? - Basildon - Braintree - Brentwood - Castlepoint - Chelmsford - Colchester - Epping Forest - Harlow - Maldon - Rochford - Tendring - Uttlesford Support to meet your business needs If you need help with staffing, strategy or business finance, we can offer up to 12 hours of free support from our expert team. Access business funding for growth We can help you to access vital business funding including business loans and grants to help aid your growth Whatever the challenge, well help you find the solution Our experienced team of business advisors are here to help you overcome any barriers or difficulties your business is facing. Start up support If youve got your business idea but dont know where to take it next, we offer support that can help you learn the skills you need to succeed. How can we help your business to #StartUp? - Access our fully funded start up workshops - A free online session with one of our specialist business advisers - A free online session with one of our finance & funding experts - Free advice on finding premises in East Sussex - Preferential rates for new businesses moving into Ongar Business Centre - Access to business information fact sheets - Support to apply for a Start Up Loan Get in touch https://www.letsdobusinessgroup.co.uk/contact-us or call 0844 415 2272 (Calls cost 5p/min plus your phone company's access charge. If your mobile tariff allows free calls to landlines, you can call 01424 205 500.) Email info@ldbgroup.co.uk
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Property

Ongar Business Centre
Managed by Let's Do Business Group, Ongar Business Centre in Essex offers more than just business space. We're a stimulating, supportive and managed working environment with secure meeting rooms, co-working spaces and offices. In our purpose built business centre, we provide our tenants and their businesses, big or small, with a range of high end facilities, and they can also benefit from our free business support service Backing Essex Business to help them grow. Find out more about Ongar Business Centre and our current available spaces https://www.ongarbusinesscentre.co.uk/ ONGAR BUSINESS CENTRE, THE GABLES, FYFIELD ROAD, ONGAR, ESSEX, CM5 0GA
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Networking

Backing Business Essex Events
As part of our Backing Essex Business support programme, we regularly run both online and in-person events across Essex in partnership with other organisations in the county. From Start Up Business workshops to help you launch with the help of an expert business coach, to learning new skills to grow your business and expanding your network, see what events we have coming up near you! https://backingessexbusiness.co.uk/events
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Funding

IGF Invoice Finance Ltd
The major banks are failing to meet the needs of the SME market. They are inflexible, expect high levels of security for all their lending, and lack any sympathy with, or understanding of, their SME customers. Does your bank spend time listening to your business needs? If your business experienced any financial difficulties, can you rely on their support? Unlike the major banks and major commercial finance providers, IGF is available when you need us. We will ensure we really understand your business and its needs. We will listen and we will care about your goals. We see the relationship as a long term partnership and your success is our success. We value your business; so we do what we promise and wont let you down. We work in a friendly yet highly professional way; championing the needs of the SME. Its why we are so often recommended, not only by our existing clients, but also by accountants and financial consultants throughout the UK. Its why we are challenging the established finance providers and big name institutions; and, its why we are clearly a better finance partner for your business IGF are a leading independent Invoice Finance provider and have been established for over 15 years. The business is part of ABFA (Asset Based Finance Association) and is wholly owned by The Greater London Enterprise (GLE). This solid backing not only gives us a strong pedigree but it means we are ultimately owned by all of the London Boroughs. IGF offer a broad suite of Invoice Finance and related services including Factoring, and Confidential Invoice Discounting along with sundry services such as payroll, direct debit collection, and short term loan facilities.
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Web design

Mr Creator
Mr Creator is a creative company that has an eye for detail.
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Accountancy

FZCO Accountants
FZCO Accountants is a certified accountancy firm that enjoys a worldwide reputation for providing efficient and innovative VAT Registration and VAT Return services. We specialise in global ecommerce cross-border selling taxation, submitting VAT returns and VAT registration in the UK, EU, UAE, UAE and Saudi Arabia. We ensure that accounts, corporation tax, payroll and VAT/GST/ sales tax are prepared according to a timetable. Through our history of supporting ecommerce sellers, we have a strong understanding of the problems global ecommerce sellers face, which is why our professionals are able to guide you through any unforeseen circumstances step by step.
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Advice

Let's Do Business Group
With the ability to help businesses across all sectors, our team can offer business consultancy services to help you achieve your goals. The Let’s Do Business Group can provide virtual business consultancy services through our team of business professionals and quality assured consultants. Whether its developing a business plan or strategy, coaching or mentoring of senior staff and business owners, or just being a sounding board our team are here to help. We offer a free initial consultation so that we understand your needs, and you get to know us. We will then agree how we will work together and our fees – this could be from a one off session, a short support programme or a longer term project. We also have access to a range of other business specialists to help you with anything from Marketing to HR – so whatever your need, we can find a solution. Contact the team today at https://www.letsdobusinessgroup.co.uk/contact-us or email info@ldbgroup.co.uk
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Networking

The Lonely Middle Club - From Startup Hive
Starting a business is exciting, and succeeding is rewarding, but what about the bit between? You know, that bit that’s full of self-doubt, endless repetition and feelings of being out of your comfort zone? We call it ‘The Lonely Middle’ and it’s one of the hardest parts of creating a successful business. We know, we’ve been there. So, we created The Lonely Middle Club to help you through it. Each month you get exclusive content to help give you the knowledge and inspiration to succeed. Plus, you get access to a private members-only Facebook group where you can get advice and network with small business owners who are going through similar challenges to you. If you want even more, you can download our 51 worksheets, guides, and journals all designed to do one thing, and one thing only… help you get through ‘The Lonely Middle’ and achieve your business goals. Visit our website today to join the club and benefit from our members price lock and full no questions asked money-back guarantee.
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Advice

South East LEP (Local Enterprise Partnership)
The South East LEP is a partnership of leaders - from the business community and from local authorities with their democratic mandates - and will perform a leadership role. This leadership role means acting as strong advocates for the area - working with Government to find solutions to enable delivery of strategic transport infrastructure that will drive national prosperity and economic growth. SELEP will be a strong voice on behalf of businesses and communities and work to ensure that Government and the European Union realise the national and international importance of the South East LEP area in the allocation of scare resources. Advocacy will be supported by project specific economic intelligence which will provide the evidence base for investment.
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Networking

FSB Essex
FSB Essex is the local branch of the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB). It was formed in 1974 as the National Federation of Self Employed and represents the interests of small and medium-sized businesses locally and nationally. They offer a great package tailored to your needs if you are thinking about starting a business in the area. Contact: Iain Wicks Development Manager Iain.Wicks@fsb.org.uk
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Advice

Colchester & Essex Business Agency
The Colchester Business Enterprise Agency (Colbea) is a non-profit making organisation designed to help new businesses get off the ground and small entrepreneurs develop their ideas into successful ventures. Advice is completely free. The Agency is supported by the local councils in Colchester and Tendring, by funding from EEDA (the East of England Development Agency) and by the support of local businesses. Its sole aim is to see the economic prosperity of the region improve through new business development. Colbea offers free confidential business advice from accredited professionals, plus business training that will give you the skills you need to start your business on a firm footing.
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Advice

Essex County Council
Essex County Council operate a number of business programmes and work with partners to deliver expertise and consultation on a number of themes to new and established businesses including: Exporting, Developing innovative business ideas, Finding new premises, Finance and funding, Academic partnerships, Business relocation consulting.Essex County Council is committed to helping Essex-based businesses increase their competitive advantage by providing and working with partners on a range of business development activities from premises for early stage businesses to testing the market.
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Advice

Harlow Council - Business
Harlow Council is keen to ensure that starting local business and existing local businesses can get the right sort of help and advice to grow. There are a variety of organisations, agencies and tools available, if you would like specific information on the type of support available and which support is best for your needs, please email: david.sellings@harlow.gov.uk providing brief details on your circumstances and the support you may require.
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Advice

Essex Chambers of Commerce
Essex Chambers of Commerce is the home of business right across the county helping businesses from SME’s through to national and international companies to succeed. Business Support – whether it is by attending one of our networking events across the county, our business exhibitions, promoting your business through our electronic newsletters, HR support, online health and safety support, we can help support you and your business.
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Advice

BEST For Business Solutions
The BEST website hasa page dedicated to business start-up and those organisations who may be able to help.
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Advice

Starting a Business in Essex
Essex County Council has been offering advice to new businesses for many years. We aim to make the information you require easy to find so you can get on with what really matters: getting started. We can also put you in touch with other people who want to help. The Business Information Service can also provide help in the form of useful, free factsheets. For further information call the Business Information Service on: 01245 492535 or email: business.information@essex.gov.uk
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Advice

Essex libraries
Libraries fit for the future and a fit with people’s lives. A vision of a library service available on-line 24-7 to fit with people’s lives in Essex is to be considered by the County Council. A great place to start your new business market research
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Insurance

MoffattSaunders
Commercial and Personal Insurance Specialists We provide a wide range of corporate, commercial and personal insurances. We place insurances with more than 100 insurance providers using our negotiating strength as founder member of the CCV Group to achieve competitive terms and prices for our clients. Wherever possible we use market leading products from reputable insurers who provide excellent service levels. The CCV group regularly reviews the financial stability of insurers to help safeguard your interests.
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Networking

Essex Business Forum
An independent networking group made up of 30 or so members. From tradesmen, to professional services and everything in between. We actively promote each other by passing regular, high quality referrals and collaborate to grow our businesses.
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Property

Harlow Business Centre
Flexible Space to Rent on Flexible Terms At HARLOW BUSINESS CENTRE we offer clients flexible space to rent on flexible terms within a professional and secure business community. Our commercial offices and warehouses provide business workspace for rent or lease and our on-site management team are available daily to support your growing business.
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Start-up articles

100's of free startup articles

We have created a collection of 100s of startup articles to help anyone with whatever stage they are on with their business journey. Hundreds of thousands of people have gone before you and we can learn from what they got right and avoid the things that have been proved not to work so well.

You can see the full list of 'articles' at: How to start a business