Today sees the launch of an innovative business support service in Portsmouth. Solent Business & Skills Solutions (SBSS) will be looking to offer a range of FREE, impartial support to empower SMEs across the city.

This includes essential advice on financial literacy, business planning and online marketing which will be delivered through a number of workshops, online resources and learning modules.

The service also offers assistance with implementing net-zero, facilitating apprenticeships, navigating the skills system and fostering a fair and inclusive workplace environment through the Good Work Charter.

The SBSS team has a huge amount of experience and has grown out of the Solent Apprenticeship and Skills Hub (SASH). They will be using the award-winning DNAsix enterprise support programme to reach up to 500 businesses over the next two years.

The new venture is backed by both Portsmouth and Southampton city councils and represents a fresh approach to enterprise support.

Its aim is to empower businesses by providing them with access to valuable information, resources and funding – ultimately enabling them to implement sustainable practices and seize opportunities for growth and innovation.

Cllr Steve Pitt, Leader of Portsmouth City Council with responsibility for economic development said:

“Portsmouth City Council are thrilled to continue the partnership work across the city around skills development and net zero awareness.

This project forms part of a wider support package that the council is providing to our businesses, complimenting another business support package we are delivering with Shaping Portsmouth.

We are focused on ensuring the our businesses and workforce are given the vital tools and resources to thrive in this current economic climate, and we look forward to seeing the positive impact this programme will provide.”

Jodi Fair who heads up SBSS said:

“We know that it has been an incredibly tough few years for small businesses right across the Solent region. We’ve had Covid, trying to build a new trading relationship with Europe post Brexit, increasing challenges from AI and other tech plus growing concerns about sustainability and the effects of climate change.

From talking to dozens of business owners in Portsmouth and Southampton, it is clear that people just want simple guidance about how they can stay profitable, stay green and help the next generation into employment.”

To access the service visit