Business guru will give tips to Local Business Accelerators entrants

�An independent business consultant is the latest person to lend their support to a nationwide competition aimed at boosting the borough’s business community.

Jamie Banks, who is an influential committee member of Barking and Dagenham Chamber of Commerce, praised the Newspaper Society’s Local Business Accelerator campaign.

The Post has teamed up with Dragons Den star Deborah Meaden to search for the borough’s most inspiring start-up business which is between one and five years old.

Up for grabs is free advertising space for winners in the Post, support from a mentor in the local business community and the chance to win the support and expertise of Deborah.

A �10,000 prize will also be awarded to the overall winner, courtesy of the Business Growth Fund (BGF).

Mr Banks, who will help judge Barking and Dagenham entries and has offered mentoring support, said: “I am happy to support this initiative which gives local businesses a terrific opportunity to gain the potential benefit of free advertising with the Post and mentoring. Winners will benefit from profile-raising by Archant newspapers and learn the benefits of mentoring.”

The scheme has received backing from Prime Minister David Cameron, the Governor of the Bank of England, Sir Mervyn King, and Mark Kass, head of Barking Enterprise Centre.

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More than 500 local newspapers across the country have pledged �15million of free advertising space as part of the initiative.

Judges are looking for a business with a great idea or product, that is between one and five years old, active in the Barking and Dagenham community and full of potential.

n For more on the competition visit by November 16.