Coast to Capital

How Coast to Capital use mnAI:

The mnAI platform provides the opportunity for Coast to Capital and LEPs / Growth Hubs to use its data as part of research, targeting and support for businesses they engage with. The platform can provide strategic insight into the priority sectors and sub sectors in each borough or LEP, borough or local area.

The data enables LEPs and Growth Hubs to review the businesses that they engage with to:

• Ensure that CRM data reflects the engagement with limited companies and that support is properly mapped against women majority and women joint owned businesses.

• Develop a baseline of engagement with women majority and joint-owned businesses based on company director information.

• Analyse engagement by factors including:

o Sector
o Districts and boroughs
o Size of business
o Growth of business
o Key financial information

The use of the data will enable improvements in engagement to be targeted, measured and recorded over time. Within Coast to Capital the mnAI data has been used by members of the Growth Hub, Strategy and Policy and Diversity working group teams. Within the Growth Hub the platform has been used to identify women-led businesses in the Coast to Capital area, segmented by district and borough and sector. This has enabled us,
for the first time, to compare the proportion of women led businesses we have supported compared with the proportion of women led business across all registered businesses. Because the platform allows us to identify numbers of women-owned businesses by geography and by sector we are able to build our work programmes on this. We know, for example, that 16% of the 1825 businesses in Reigate and Banstead are women-owned, and that 26% of these are in the professional, scientific and technical sectors.

As a result of the analysis we can prioritise our work with the professional, scientific and technical sectors, to ensure that our services more accessible for women-owned businesses and we can set performance targets for our Growth Hub team which will ensure that the engagement we have with women-owned businesses matches their predominance within each local the economy. Another example is the granularity of the information and the insights it gives us. We can identify sector-level detail, hotspots and common trends amongst women-owned
businesses.

We can use this information as a starting point for discussion with partners – ensuring that FSB, Chambers etc are working off the same strategy as us. The tool is also very helpful in our due-diligence exercises and mapping the interrelationships between companies that we support. An area for future development will be tracking investments in businesses and identifying investors and their investment priorities. This also helps us to identify scale up businesses who we can proactively approach with. Overall we expect use of targeted information like this to super-cede other business information tools that we have traditionally used. This is an excellent example of the value of big data in driving better decision-making and more efficient use of resources within our team.

What have you learnt from using this data?

The data has highlighted hot spots for women led businesses. For example we have identified that there is a concentration of women led businesses in the Brighton and Hove area – more than 5,500 businesses. We were not aware previously that the highest proportion of women led businesses in
Reigate and Banstead was in the professional, scientific and technical sectors. We have learnt where we have better engaged with women led businesses which is informing future activity. Moving forward we will trial other engagement methods eg social media and tele marketing to increase and improve our engagement.

How has it helped you to support women owned and led businesses in your LEP area?

mnAI has provided much greater insight into the gender leadership diversity in Coast to Capital. The use of the mnAI has helped us to develop a strategy for future engagement. For example we are engaging with local membership organisation, local authorities and partners including our Expert in Residence partner NatWest to identify women led or women joint led businesses they are supporting. This will then lead to for warm lead referrals. Understanding the make-up of women led businesses will ensure that we develop the most effective engagement strategies moving forward.

Read more about mnAIs gender reporting technology here

Read more about how the Catalyst South LEP networks use mnAI here

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