Paul Banks and Martin Smith

Free rent in £20k unit for Canmoor prize winner

Simon Donohue

Two fledgling companies have won free use of business accommodation at Canmoor's Westbrook Park site in Trafford Park for a year in a new competition for entrepreneurs.

Winner Image Alchemy Holdings and runner-up Planet Green Team will occupy 2,250 sq ft Unit 55 and 1,250 sq ft Unit 39 respectively. The rent for a year in Unit 55 would normally be £20,000.

Canmoor launched the North West Entrepreneur Award scheme to celebrate young and dynamic business ideas.

Operated by entrepreneur Paul Banks, Image Alchemy Holdings specialises in Digital Image Print Systems and is currently based in Sale.

Set to become an annual award, Canmoor considered applications along with representatives from Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce and Trafford council.

The criteria for the winning businesses included, being able to "demonstrate a vision and a capacity for achieving goals, backed by sound planning, strategies and creative thinking".

Sustainable business growth and employment generation were also key, as well as being able to "demonstrate clearly how the offer of 12 months accommodation in one of Canmoor's units at Westbrook Park, Trafford Park, will benefit the business and deliver its growth ambitions".

Canmoor director Mark Braithwaite said: "The units at Westbrook will provide Alchemy and Planet Green Team with strong bases to grow their businesses in an excellent location and we're looking forward to watching their progress over the coming months.

"They will also benefit from being part of a thriving business community at Westbrook – a location directly opposite Media City UK."

Westbrook Park comprises 59 units ranging offers from 1,180 sq ft to 7,750 sq ft and benefits from easy access to Manchester city centre and M60 motorway.

Canmoor will be launching the 2014 North West Entrepreneur Award in the autumn and will be inviting companies to register interest for an application form.

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