Future Southampton

📰 First Broadband Vouchers issued to local businesses

    • first broadband vouchers presented 110515

    first broadband vouchers presented 110515

The first three Southampton businesses have benefitted from the recently announced superfast broadband connection voucher scheme: Corrotherm, Lawson HIS and CMA Recruitment Group were issued their vouchers at the Civic Centre today (11 May).  A further 30+ businesses are also undertaking the application process presently, but all SMEs (Small and Medium Enterprises), social enterprises and charities locally are eligible.

“There are a phenomenal number of businesses that could be increasing their productivity and improving their interactions with customers, and ultimately, making more money”, says Dawn Baxendale, Chief Executive of Southampton City Council.  “We know that as a city we are doing really well to grow and expand our economy, and it’s because of the hard graft of our local businesses.  With this government-backed scheme, we can now support businesses to achieve even more for themselves and our city, with the introduction of this superfast broadband connection voucher scheme.  It’s up to £3,000 of free money.”

Businesses of up to 249 employees can apply for up to £3,000 each to connect their business to superfast broadband; that’s 99% of Southampton businesses that could benefit from £3,000 FREE funding! Government funding is available to SMEs in and around Southampton until 31 March 2016.

The application process is simple:
• If a business is an SME within the scheme area (all of Southampton and Eastleigh, and parts of Test Valley and the New Forest), they can check their eligibility at www.connectionvouchers.co.uk.
• If eligible, request a quote from one of 400 suppliers throughout the UK.
• Businesses then need to apply, attaching their quote, online at www.connectionvouchers.co.uk.

The process for approval is quick.  Southampton City Council will assess the application and administer the funding.  These three businesses received their vouchers within two weeks of applying.

Jan Ward, CBE at Corrotherm International Ltd, said: “Superfast broadband is important to the growth of our business. We are in the oil and gas sector, and are facing significant competition globally.  We have locations in eight countries and internet-based communications are key to our daily operations; both internally and with customers and suppliers. The voucher scheme will enable us to upgrade our connection, which we otherwise would not be able to consider in the current market.”

Richard Brown, IT Manager at Lawson HIS, said: “The Connection Voucher scheme will help us install a new leased line that will increase our download speed by over 250%, and our upload speed by over 3000%, with the capacity to increase our speeds even more if we need it.  The benefit of this to our 30 staff will be enormous after suffering under our old ADSL connection, especially those interacting with customers on our website www.lawson-his.co.uk and those working remotely. Once we had the quote from our chosen supplier, applying for the connection voucher was extremely easy.”

Neil Phillips, Operations Director at CMA Recruitment Group, said: “Our Southampton site hosts an integral part of our IT infrastructure, both locally and for the wider CMA Recruitment Group operations.  The connection voucher scheme has afforded us the opportunity to invest in the very latest MPLS network providing increased speeds and platform reliability, key to any business today operating at the forefront of its market. The application process was simple and I’d recommend all to take advantage of this fantastic scheme.”