Cabinet: Barking Enterprise Centre future to be discussed tonight
- Credit: Archant
The Barking Enterprise Centre (BEC) could be about to expand and operate under a new social enterprise, through plans to be discussed at cabinet tonight.
Funded by Barking and Dagenham Council until June, the Cambridge Road centre is one of the institutions losing out under the recent public-sector cuts.
Selling the building outright has been suggested, a valuation estimating a £1.1million pricetag in its existing role, £1.35 if used for general office space or £1.6million if converted into homes – all lower than the original £3.4million building costs.
But officers will propose setting up a social enterprise – opening up more exterior funding opportunities – to manage the BEC and collect the business rent.
Expansion into The Foyer, in nearby Wakering Road, a nine-storey tower block bedsit currently providing accommodation for 116 young people, is also possible.
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Anglo-Spanish company Tradex Consultancy UK, are one of the many start-ups calling the BEC home, launching in January 2014.
Currently setting up a second office in Malaga, chief executive Juan Jose Galicia looked at various locations across the capital before setting up business in Barking and has no plans to leave.
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“It’s a great location – reasonably close to central London, which is crucial for our clients,” he said.
“The fact that it’s a business centre, as opposed to an office, is brilliant for us too and much better environment to work in.
“There are plenty of networking opportunities – very important in helping the business grow.”