Almost every morning, software entrepreneur Mark Thomas walks through the entrance to his office’s building, under a huge graphic thought-bubble which proclaims ‘Good Thinking . . .’
Mark’s ‘Good Thinking’ has created Coderus; a software business with a phenomenal average growth rate of 40% over the past seven years. “And”, says Mark, “the New Anglia Growth Hub has definitely contributed to that percentage and to scaling up the business.”
Mark has been a software developer since he was 11 years old. As his family ran a farming business, creating a company was a natural progression, from his former part-time freelance work.
Coderus is based at Innovation Martlesham, a centre for thriving ICT companies at Adastral Park, Suffolk. The company designs mobile apps and wearable technology devices for clients. He first worked with the Growth Hub to successfully secure a grant and has been supported by Fiona Little, a Business Adviser for the New Anglia Growth Hub.
Scale Up New Anglia
More recently he has taken part in the Scale Up New Anglia programme. Scale Up New Anglia is an extensive programme created to facilitate high growth in ambitious businesses. It brings together groups of like-minded entrepreneurs who take part in a range of fully funded activities.
The programme includes one-to-one business coaching, group workshops, events, access to funding and signposting to specialist programmes including the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business Programme a free programme to help business leaders create jobs through providing education, capital and business support services, which Mark has participated in.
“It was absolutely fantastic,” said Mark. “I met with a whole bunch of similar-minded business owners. It’s true what they say. It’s lonely at the top. So, it has been great talking to them and saying ‘How does this sound to you? Am I mad doing this?”
“I would definitely recommend businesses to contact the Growth Hub. It’s been really great having a team who’s able to identify these programmes and additional funds.” Mark will be talking to the businesses he collaborates with, to ensure they get in contact with the Growth Hub and take advantage of the advice, support and funding they can offer.
His vision is for Coderus to be the primary software solution for global customers. As Mark leaves the office under the ‘Good Thinking’ sign each day, Coderus may well be closer to reaching his scale up goal.
The Kickstart Scheme, announced in the Government’s Plan for Jobs, provides funding for employers to create new job placements for 16 to 24-year-olds on Universal Credit who are at risk of long-term unemployment.
From engineering and marine companies to marketing firms and food producers, businesses have shared in £32.5m of grants over the lifetime of New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership’s Growing Business Fund.
Work is nearing completion on the new £16m Cefas (Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science) headquarters in Lowestoft and its opening is scheduled for winter 2021.
The facility will provide a centre for applied science, commercial space, refurbished laboratories and new offices, and delivering a fit-for-purpose marine science facility that will secure Cefas in the region for the next 40 years.
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