A number of organisations can help you with business support services including developing your business case, financial planning and completing a successful application form to access funding.


Portsmouth City Council business support – Friendly business support service: referrals to specific business advice agencies, funding support, premises search, support with other council services e.g. Planning permission, business rates, licensing etc. Email business@portsmouthcc.gov.uk, call 023 9284 1641

The Hive Portsmouth – Social Enterprise start up support, Charity information, Funding search, Workspace, Networks.

Solent Partners – A free business support service available to all Solent based businesses with advisors who are here to simplify and signpost you to opportunities, both locally and nationally.

Energy Bill Discount Scheme – a baseline discount to provide some support with energy bills until 31 March 2024.

Federation of Small Businesses – Help self employed and smaller businesses to achieve their ambitions, providing business services and products to business owners.

Gov.uk business website – Government services to businesses.

Help to grow – is a 12 weeks, fully funded online and face-to-face practical management training programme.  It includes 1-2-1 bespoke mentoring for the business (10 sessions) with experienced coaching professionals from the industry. Portsmouth Business School at the University of Portsmouth delivers the programme.  This is accredited by the Small Business Charter (SBC) and supported by the Department for Business and Trade.  To qualify, a business must have been operating for at least 1 year and have between 5 and 249 employees.

Hampshire Chamber of Commerce – A not-for-profit business support and networking organisation, engages the voice, expertise and experience of thousands of businesses across the County, influencing decision-making and shaping practical solutions.

University of Portsmouth business services – The University offers a wide range of services to help support and grow your business, including business events and programmes.

Further information and advice

Department for Business and Trade – For support with international trade and exporting opportunities, free advice and support.

Portsmouth Central Library – Advice about IP, patents and business information.

Portsmouth City Council markets team and retail advisor – Advice about market information. Call 023 9284 1068.

Portsmouth City Council business premises – Help with finding commercial property. Call 023 9282 6225.

Portsmouth City Council business rates team – Advice and information about paying non-domestic rates and the Business Rates discount scheme. Call 023 9268 8588

Better Business Finance – Provides support to businesses looking to raise finance.

The Business and Finance Support Finder tool – An in-depth database of information about grants, loans and other financial assistance available to businesses in the UK.

The Business Finance Guide – The main things to consider and finance options available to businesses, from start-ups to SMEs and growing mid-sized companies.

Crowd Cube – Offers exposure to thousands of potential investors.

Employment Allowance – Small Business employers can get £2,000 by claiming this relief on National Insurance bills.

Help to start up and grow – Offers ways of obtaining finance – email info@enterprisefirst.co.uk.



Help to Grow Management Programme – Currently fully funded training for SMEs to lead on the delivery of increased profitability, innovation and growth. Run by the University of Portsmouth.

NatWest Business Builder – Online course packed with practical resources to help businesses start or grow.

Help to Grow: Management Essentials – a FREE online course with practical tips and resources for small businesses from the Department for Business and Trade. Through a series of practical, bite-sized videos and supporting resources, you will explore how to think more strategically about your business, your target market and your go-to-market strategy.