Pendle tech firm Patch App UK launches flagship Academy in partnership with Community and Business Partners CIC and Burnley Football Club in the Community
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The Armed Forces Business Academy, the first of its kind in the UK, will train ex-forces service personnel to operate their own home maintenance businesses.
It aims to turn 119 ex-Forces employees into business owners in the first five years.
As part of the Academy, Community and Business Partners CIC will provide veterans with two years of business mentoring and training. For the first 12 months, they will have meaningful employment and training with Patch, and then they will take on that part of the business and operate it themselves.
Burnley Football Club in the Community, who have a strong Military Veterans programme, will be the recruitment partner.
Patch App UK, a pioneering tech company was co-founded by Paul White, who also modernised the cash based milk delivery round with The Modern Milkman, and Innovate UK’s Young Innovator, 24-year-old Conor Walsh.
Paul White, founder and CEO of Patch App UK said “We’re a tech company and customers are our number one priority. By promoting this way of working, we’re able to ensure the services are of the highest quality, whilst supporting our ex-forces Veterans with proper entrepreneurial opportunity. That’s something I’m really passionate about.
“We didn’t want to provide our services by simply employing a workforce. That’s no longer enough in today’s society.
"We wanted to come up with a solution where the people delivering the services were as invested as we are. Effectively, we’re sharing the ownership of the operational side of our business. They’ll provide the services and we’ll run the tech.”
Paul’s grandfather, Sqdn. Leader Robert Ellis RAF (Retd), is the Academy’s honorary president.
Jaydee Davis, operations director at Community and Business Partners, said: “Paul came to us with this brilliant idea to deliver their business in a completely unique way and it’s something that we’re really excited about. It could change the way of work in the future.
“As a CIC everything we do is to benefit others, so we’re delighted to be able to help those who have given so much to our country to set up their own businesses. They’ll be directly supported by some of our brilliant mentors, who are also ex-forces veterans.”
Daniella Worth, veteran project co-ordiantor at Burnley Football in the Community, said: “We’re really proud of our Military Veterans Programme and when Patch came to us asking for support, we were excited to get involved.
“Because we’re already working with military veterans, we’re well placed to be able to access that community, and already there’s strong interest from members of our military veterans football team.”
Conor Walsh, co-Founder of Patch App UK, said: “We’re so proud to be launching this in Burnley, where we all have strong roots, but it’s a UK-wide scheme. Of course, to be working alongside the newly promoted Premier League club and a multi-award winning business support organisation is something of an honour for us.
“We’re equally proud to be working alongside ex-forces veterans. We’ve worked hard with Government and partners over the last 12 months to get this off the ground. It’s going to be a gamechanger, we’re going to make sure of it.”