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Newcastle Startup Week founder launches ‘Lifetime Membership’

The founder & event producer of the annual, 5-day Newcastle Startup Week festival, Paul Lancaster, has announced that anyone joining his online ‘Startup Week Community’ will be given ‘Lifetime Membership’ of his private Facebook Group, free access to any of his future events (both online & offline), speaking, networking & marketing opportunities, 1-2-1 business coaching, exclusive content, special offers & discounts to help them start or grow their business.

After running three physical Newcastle Startup Week events in 2017, 2018 & 2019 for 600, 600 & then 800 delegates, the COVID-19 lockdown forced him to move everything online & run two Startup Week ONLINE events in May & September 2020 for 300 & 200 delegates respectively.

These were delivered through a new, private Facebook Group which Paul has kept running ever since & currently contains 182 Members who are mostly small business owners from across the North East of England but also includes local business advisors, experts from large multinational companies, lawyers, accountants & some investors too.

In January 2021, he also re-positioned the newcastlestartupweek.com website to be an all-year-round resource for anyone wanting to start or grow a business in Newcastle upon Tyne & the wider North East of England with weekly blogs, videos, business guides, newsletters & a large following on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram & YouTube from across the region, wider UK & around the world.

Paul said: “Pre-COVID, one of the major strengths of the North East of England was the close-knit & collaborative business community which enabled people to learn, innovate & launch things quickly. Unfortunately, although many of us are more digitally connected, the pandemic has made it much harder for new & established business owners alike to know what is happening & where to go for the best help, advice & funding. We’re missing the human connection & serendipitous conversations that used to happen when meeting in person.”

“The original aim of my annual Newcastle Startup Week festival was to make it easier for people to find everything they needed to start or grow a business in one place & provide a platform from which everyone in the startup ecosystem could benefit. By moving everything online, although we now have the potential to reach even more people all-year-round, the importance of a friendly, supportive & knowledgeable community of real-life small business owners should not be underestimated.”

He added: “The current Startup Week Community Members & I have done some amazing things together over the past 12 months but I’m even more excited about what we can do in the months & years ahead, especially when COVID-19 finally goes away & we can start having live events again!”

Anyone who is thinking of starting a business, is already running a micro business (0-9 employees) or can offer help & advice to small businesses in the North East of England is encouraged to become a ‘Lifetime Member’ of the Startup Week Community at newcastlestartupweek.com/community