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Norfolk Knowledge winding down statement

Norfolk Knowledge, a voluntary organisation that is supported by, and in turn supports, the work of the Norwich Business School at the University of East Anglia, has decided to wind down its operations.

The organisation, which has mentored nearly 500 local business owners and entrepreneurs over a period of nearly a decade, was formed by a group of volunteer local business people and experienced managers in 2009 under the auspices of the Norwich Business School.

Its initial focus was on assisting small businesses in their growth objectives, as well as start-ups or those thinking about creating a new business.  Later, it provided support to the Norwich Business School students in events such as the Graduate Trainee Management Scheme, MBA interview practice sessions and Enterprise Centre business idea ‘boot-camps’.

Professor Paul Dobson, Head of Norwich Business School, offered his thanks and appreciation for the work undertaken by Norfolk Knowledge, and said, “helping small businesses grow is vital to the local economy in creating jobs and prosperity, and the assistance provided by Norfolk Knowledge has provided a lasting benefit for local businesses as well as serving our students.”

“The success of Norfolk Knowledge has been substantially down to the volunteer members who have freely given their time and expertise,” said Peter Schmidt-Hansen, Course Leader for MSc Brand Leadership at Norwich Business School and Chairman of the Norfolk Knowledge Management Team. 

Peter further explained, “When Norfolk Knowledge was created, just after the financial crash of 2008, there was a need to encourage and support small and new business owners.  Norfolk Knowledge was able to contribute its considerable range of competencies and experience to those owners in a way that was simple, free and without complicated contractual obligation. However, since that time, many more options for small business support have become available, often with financial support through loans or grants, which has reduced demand for what Norfolk Knowledge had to offer.”

Norfolk Knowledge will not therefore be taking on any further mentoring support and will formally cease its existing mentoring and student support services on 31st August 2018.

“The Norfolk Knowledge members and management team can be justly proud of their achievements over the last 10 years, knowing that that they have supported the local business community in a positive way,” said Peter.