By Claire West
Business Secretary Vince Cable today announced a new Entrepreneurs' Forum to provide informal and personal advice on new business and enterprise policies.
The announcement was made at the beginning of Global Entrepreneurship Week, seven days of events to boost enterprise and start-ups across the globe.
The forum is part of the Government's agenda to engage with business people to hear their views on unleashing enterprise and encouraging entrepreneurship as an alternative career. The Business Secretary wants to break down the barriers that deter people from taking the leap into starting a business and encourage them to make a job, not take a job.
The ever-changing economic environment represents an incredible opportunity for those willing to take a risk, for small businesses to flourish and for innovations to drive growth and create jobs.
Up to 26 entrepreneurs will sit on the forum, including Jan Fletcher, Dawn Gibbins and Sarah Tremellen. They have been drawn together on the basis of experience they can bring to the development of enterprise policy. A significant proportion of the forum are women and increasing the rate of female entrepreneurs is one area the forum will be encouraged to look at.
Business Secretary Vince Cable said:
"People with the courage to start up a business will be crucial to driving the growth of the economy. Start-ups create jobs, stimulate innovation and provide a competitive spur to existing businesses to encourage them to increase their productivity. I am delighted with the quality of the membership of my new forum and look forward to bouncing ideas off them and hearing their views."
The forum will meet around four times a year, with a flexible schedule according to the material to be discussed. The first meeting is expected to take place early in the new year.
Members were chosen on the basis of individual experience and advice they can provide on new business and enterprise policies.
The forum is just one of several ways in which the Business Secretary will hold dialogue with business. The forum will complement other groups, such as the Prime Minister's Business Advisory Group; the Secretary of State's Business Advisory Group; and the Small Business Economic Forum.