Marketing, PR and IT firms are adding their expertise to the pioneering Timebank initiative designed to help Manchester businesses successfully navigate the recession.
Big name companies from the legal, financial services and accountancy industries had already agreed to donate time to advise fellow businesses under the Timebank scheme, jointly developed by Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce and Manchester City Council.
Now the range of available support has expanded with PR agencies Weber Shandwick, Amaze, Tangerine PR, CheethamBell JWT and Gourley Marketing also pledging their time. IT experts NLDC Consultancy and Red Satsuma have also signed up.
Companies who have already tapped into the Timebank have requested advice on cashflow, tax, legal, redundancy and sales and marketing issues.
Sir Richard Leese, Leader of Manchester City Council, said: “The response by companies donating their time shows that the phrase ‘business community’ has real resonance in Manchester.
“The Timebank is free to use but the wealth of expertise on offer makes it an extremely valuable resource. I’d encourage anyone who thinks their business could benefit to seize the opportunity without delay.”
Angie Robinson, Chief Executive of Greater Manchester Chamber, said: “There is a real opportunity here for companies to review their growth strategy and discuss it with experts, with absolutely no catch. There are still hours in the Timebank just waiting to be accessed and I would encourage businesses to tap into this wealth of expertise while it’s available.”
Jo Leah, Weber Shandwick Managing Director, said: “The downturn has meant a new direction for many businesses and Weber Shandwick is a big supporter of the new Timebank initiative which aims to support those businesses prepared to be entrepreneurial, energetic and inventive and wanting to draw on the wealth of experience the Weber team can offer in building brands, raising profiles, growing reputations, using advocates and more importantly using PR to grow revenues.”
Timebank is part of the wider Helping Hands initiative, led by Manchester City Council and its partners, to help both businesses and residents cope with the effects of the economic downturn.
To find out more about Timebank, or other advice available to businesses of all sizes, ring the Business Advice Centre on 0845 608 3388 between 8.30am and 5pm. An application form is also available on the Helping Hands website at www.manchester.gov.uk/helpinghan.
Source: Manchester City Council