Circular Economy Accelerator event by NatWest will help SMEs boost sustainability
As SMEs look to become greener, NatWest, the UK’s biggest business bank, is offering a free virtual event on 13 May 2022 9.30am – 12.30pm on the circular economy. It will explore how businesses can eliminate waste and pollution, recycle products and materials and help regenerate nature. It will support businesses to take steps to play a part in achieving the UK’s net-zero goals.
The half day event is open to all SMEs interested in the circular economy and they can sign up here to attend the event. The half day accelerator will feature a panel discussion between two business owners discussing their experience of joining the circular economy. Speakers will also include James Close, head of climate change at NatWest Group who will discuss different circular economy business models and Linzi Boyd of One Earth . Attendees will then be split into small groups and be guided in how they can take their next steps in ending waste and ensuring materials are reused.
The event will also allow for networking opportunities with like-minded entrepreneurs as well as knowledge of the resources and support of offer for businesses. The event is open to all businesses but will probably be of most interest to manufacturing and retail companies.
NatWest has supported more than 3,500 businesses since 2018 through its 13 accelerator hubs across the UK. Out of these businesses, 43% are female-led and 20% are run by entrepreneurs from an ethnic minority background.
The Circular Economy Accelerator event follows the launch of NatWest’s green loans for SMEs and green asset finance through Lombard. Companies can access funds with no arrangement fee to help them transition to more sustainable working practices. The bank has pledged to lend £100bn by 2025 to businesses looking to invest in being greener. NatWest’s Springboard to Sustainability report, published in October 2021, found that half the UK’s carbon reduction ambition can be delivered by the SME sector and the Circular Economy Accelerator event is the bank’s latest offering to help UK SMEs pursue this goal.
James Close, head of climate change at NatWest Group, said: “We’re often asked by SMEs on our accelerators how they can become more sustainable and build the circular economy business models of the future. This is why we are offering the Circular Economy Accelerator event to give businesses practical steps they can follow and knowledge of the resources out there. NatWest has set out a clear ambition to play a leading role in helping to address the climate challenge, and so we are thrilled to be supporting businesses to help deliver on the UK’s green goals.”
Businesses can sign up to the Circular Economy Accelerator event here