University of Bedfordshire Business School wins prestigious Small Business Charter Award


The Small Business Charter, which brings world-class business schools and SME communities across the UK together, has awarded the University of Bedfordshire Business School a Bronze Charter Award in recognition of the role it plays in supporting start-ups and small businesses.

University business schools awarded with Small Business Charter awards have already directly helped over 8000 small businesses – working with them through a range of support including on-site incubators with dedicated space for students and small businesses to start up and grow; dedicated Small Business Growth & Leadership programmes; and strong full time support networks of alumni and local business experts supporting both students and small businesses. These business schools have helped 4,700 students to find work placements in Britain’s exciting micro-business and start-up sector.

Ian McNaught, Executive Director of the Small Business Charter, said:

“The Small Business Charter (SBC) is delighted to award the University of Bedfordshire Business School (UBBS) a Bronze Charter Award. The SBC welcomes UBBS into the consortium of 21 charter business schools across the UK, and looks forward to working with UBBS to positively influence regional SME engagement and economic growth. A university business school undergoes a rigorous assessment to validate it has proven and effective SME business engagement. In addition, we assess the impact of the university business school’s support across the student start-up community and across its enterprise education programmes. We’re very pleased that UBBS has met these criteria to a high standard and demonstrated its commitment to supporting small businesses.”

Receiving a Small Business Charter Award provides numerous benefits to business schools including the ability to play an active role in national schemes and Government business support initiatives such as Growth Vouchers, Building Growth Businesses and Start-Up Loans.

Dr Gordon Mellor, Executive Dean of UBBS said on receiving the award:

“I am delighted to be able to accept this award on behalf of the Business School. This is great news both for the start-up businesses we work with and for our students.

“With this award, students who choose to study business at the University of Bedfordshire know that they will have the opportunity to work on real business issues. They will get industry experience and real-world skills to put on their CV’s.

“And now, our students know the advice and assistance we can offer to grow their business idea, has been recognised as being some of the best in the country.”

One business which has seen its business grow helped by support from UBBS is A Thin Place, a creative agency based in Luton. Grant O’Sullivan, Chief Operating Officer, said:

“Our relationship with the UBBS has been very valuable. A number of our team have benefited from courses and training that has helped with the development of our business. We have also worked with UBBS students on our internship programme as well as working with UBBS as a supplier.”

Another business which has been helped through its contact with UBBS is Trademaid, a supplier of Catering Equipment & Cleaning Supplies.  Alan Clarke from Trademaid said:


“Working with the business school has helped develop our sales and marketing strategy whilst also improving the way we use social media to help increase our presence on platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.”




Notes to Editors

Small Business Charter


The Small Business Charter originated following Lord Young’s report ‘Growing Your Business’, which was aimed at bringing business schools, business and entrepreneurs closer together to deliver support for small businesses and drive local economic growth. Delivered in partnership with the Association of Business Schools, and with the support of Lord Young and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, the Small Business Charter Awards offers a springboard to unlocking support and investment for students, start-ups and small businesses.


For more information about the SBC: