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Ellandi supports Revo & Bira in Free Space competition offering start-ups free retail space

Posted by Property Week on 21st Sep 2017

Free Space+ will enable businesses from across the UK to apply for free space in centres including Westfield Stratford, The Bullring in Birmingham, and Meadowhall in Sheffield as well as smaller-scale local shopping centres.

The scheme opened for applications yesterday after being launched at the Revo conference, and is being supported by retail landlords Westfield, British Land, Hammerson, Capital & Regional, M&G, Montagu Evans, Ellandi, New River Retail and Moorgarth.

Applicants will be asked to identify their preferred shopping centre, and demonstrate how trading from that location will accelerate their growth. A judging panel will select ten winners in January 2018, which will then be able to occupy space in their chosen shopping centre for three months.

Each successful applicant will also receive a support package from Bira, including insurance, legal advice and mentoring. The value to each winning business, including the market rent for the retail space, could be up to £30,000.

Ed Cooke, chief executive of Revo, said: “We are proud to bring together the UK’s leading retail landlords to create a national platform that that will help start-up businesses access the space they need to thrive and grow.

“Physical retail space is not only a point of sale, it is integral to building a retail brand and driving website traffic. Free Space+ is the first business incubation initiative of its kind, not only allowing businesses to trade from some of the UK’s leading retail destinations for free, but providing them with the support they need to fully realise its potential.

“This in turn, will bring exciting new businesses into shopping centres, where a dynamic mix of businesses is essential to attract shoppers.”

Mark Bourgeois, managing director for the UK & Ireland at Hammerson, added: “One of the great opportunities for start-up retail businesses is to find space in the right location at the heart of a busy city or town centre community. Free Space+ offers space in our centres at no cost and places aspiring retailers in locations where they can engage with millions of customers directly.

“We are excited to be working with Revo on this campaign which will not only help start-up businesses make the crucial next step, it will also introduce new, dynamic retail concepts into our shopping destinations.”

Find out more about Free Space+ here.

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