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Future 50 campaign temporarily paused due to outbreak of virus

PUBLISHED: 16:25 24 March 2020 | UPDATED: 16:25 24 March 2020

Future50 is on the hunt for its 2020 cohort. Picture: Archant

Future50 is on the hunt for its 2020 cohort. Picture: Archant

Archant

The Future 50 campaign has been temporarily postponed due to the outbreak of the coronavirus.

Partners of the project said they were aware of the pressure on businesses in the current climate, and have paused the process so candidates can focus on their staff and customers.

Publishers Archant are one of the partners. A spokeswoman said: “We have made the decision to pause the application process for the 2020 Future50 cohort. We will continue to review this regularly but please assume the Future50 will resume the application process in July. We will ensure relevant communications are made to advise all businesses of this.

“For applications received to date, we will keep them on file and put these forward to the judges in our usual process when applications close later this year. You will have the opportunity to resubmit your application or supply additional or updated evidence if you so wish.

“We would like to thank you for your interest in the Future50 programme. If you have any questions or queries please don’t hesitate to ask.

“Wishing you all the best, and good health to yourself and staff at this difficult time.”

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Partners for the campaign to find and support the brightest businesses in Norfolk and Suffolk also includes Barclays, Birketts, Lovewell Blake, New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership and the University of East Anglia.

James Shipp, of Lovewell Blake, said: “The current crisis reinforces the need for Norfolk and Suffolk’s economy to be supercharged with dynamic, growth-hungry businesses. When we come out the other side of Covid-19, businesses will need significant support to be able to rebuild our economy, and Future 50 will play an important part in this.

“Although the event has been cancelled, business life is still going on, even in these extraordinary times, and we remain committed to providing the highest levels of support to enable that to happen.”

This was echoed by Chris Starkie, chief executive of the New Anglia LEP: “Future50 is a valuable initiative which helps innovative and ambitious individuals and companies in the region to grow and create jobs – something that aligns perfectly with the priorities and aspirations of the LEP.

“We look forward to welcoming and supporting the next 50 companies when the programme resumes.”

Ed Savory of Birketts said launching would “not be possible” – especially given the campaign’s event schedule.

He added: “We may explore operating from a virtual remote platform.

“Watch this space.”

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