Celebrating £2.5 million investment in Hackney’s businesses

The resilience, creativity and sustainability of Hackney’s businesses community was the focus as local businesses came together to celebrate the positive impact of £2.5 million in direct investment in the borough’s businesses since the pandemic.

The event, hosted by the Council’s business support arm the Hackney Business Network, brought to an end a programme that has seen nearly 200 Hackney businesses and social enterprises deliver funded projects, and more than 200 more benefit from training and support opportunities.

Business owners sharing their successes from the £500,000 High Streets and Town Centres Fund included Lei Yang from the Stoke Newington homeware business Rouge, who used a grant to welcome customers back after lockdown with a series of workshops, and Michael Czerwinski from Studio Tucktite who used investment to put on events from young graduates passionate about saving the planet.

The attendees also heard how the £600,000 Hackney Central Impact and Ideas Fund was helping businesses create a greener, more inclusive Hackney Central. These included updates from Sophie Rochester from social enterprise Yodomo who are supporting a circular economy in Hackney Central by reusing waste and surplus materials creatively, and Ben Ryan and Jack Robinson from Pack London who spoke about putting music, food and culture at the heart of Bohemia Place through the Hackney Reggae Festival.

Finally, Heidi Early, Chair and one of the co-founders of See you in Stokey, which was established with the support of £50,000 of Council funding, presented on the journey of forming a business association on one of Hackney’s most iconic high streets.

 Philip Glanville, Mayor of Hackney

Since the covid pandemic we’ve invested nearly £2.5 million through the Hackney Business Network directly to Hackney businesses and their support infrastructure, and this event was a celebration of all that this has achieved – not just for the businesses themselves but for Hackney as a borough.

This includes creating dozens of new jobs and training opportunities, facilitating £1.5 million in additional investment into Hackney, and nearly £500,000 being spent in the wider local economy.

What we have proven is that, when businesses are supported to grow and innovate, they make a difference. That’s why we’ll continue to push the Government for the funding they need to help the borough on its journey to building a more inclusive and circular economy, help local people into good jobs through training and apprenticeships, and keep our high streets vibrant and unique.

Philip Glanville, Mayor of Hackney

The event was hosted by the Hackney Business Network –  a council-run initiative to support the local business community. 

About the Council’s business support programme

Since the covid pandemic, the Council has directly invested nearly £2.5 million in local business through six funds:

Three Business Support Programme funds:

  • High Streets and Town Centres fund – £500,000 invested in 40 businesses on projects to increase high street footfall and encourage spending locally, with an additional 61p spent locally for every £1 invested.
  • Hackney Central Impact and Ideas fund£590,000 invested in 22 businesses to support the economic and environmental resilience of Hackney Central.
  • Adapt Your Business fund – £570,000 invested in 48 businesses to make changes needed as a result of the pandemic or improvements to become a greener and more sustainable business. 

Together this investment has created at least 60 new jobs and 44 training and apprenticeship opportunities, funded 55 new or improved business spaces, facilitated £475,000 of spending at 481 local suppliers, and brought in nearly £1.5million in additional investment into the borough.

Hello Again, Hackey: cultural fund

  • £450,000 invested in 51 organisations to help reopen after lockdown, with nearly 30,000 free or discounted tickets for activities and events for Hackney residents.

Shoreditch and Hoxton Arts Fund

  • £250,000 invested in 16 organisations to run arts and cultural projects in Shoreditch and Hoxton, paid for through levies on new developments in the area, participated in by around 6,000 people.

Spacemakers Fund

  • £100,000 invested in nine creative businesses in Hackney Wick and Fish in partnership with Tower Hamlets Council and the London Legacy Development Corporation to upgrade their premises and equipment.