Paula Basnett said that since 1993 (Invest Wirral had formerly been called Wirral Direct), it had been involved with 941 investment projects and sixteen thousand jobs had been created or safeguarded.
In 2010/11 Invest Wirral had been involved with £13 million of investment covering 652 jobs, had an average of engaging with 800 companies a year and in the last three years had helped with £50 million of investment covering 3,000 jobs.
Cllr Denise Realey asked if they helped fund planning applications?
Paula Basnett said they didn’t reduce planning fees, but they could help businesses attract business rate relief on their business rates.
Cllr Denise Realey asked about the over 2,000 businesses registered on the website. She asked how they check they do good work, had they been into every business or did they just rely on the information the businesses had given? What would they do if the businesses were not doing a good job? How did they check these businesses out?
Paula Basnett said they ask for turnover, contracts and employees. If they are receiving support they measure this over six months and twelve months to see how it’s changed.
Cllr Realey asked again if any of the businesses work was actually checked.
Paula Basnett replied that for businesses that just register, they don’t vet them for the online forum as they’re not Trading Standards.