Hereford company wins Innovate UK grant

June 16, 2020

A Hereford company which has gone from strength to strength after receiving £200,000 funding from the Midlands Engine Investment Fund has scooped a national grant to help local traders adopt eCommerce. has been announced as a winner of Innovate UK’s COVID-19 Technology Grant to launch a community eCommerce project to help traders recover from the coronavirus pandemic.
Innovate UK received 8,600 entries to its COVID-19 technology competition which was designed to fast track innovation in the wake of the pandemic. Just 40 grants were awarded across the country. Community eCommerce enables local retailers to group together, sell on one local, own branded website, meaning local customers create and pay for one basket of goods and receive one delivery of all items ordered.
Iain Coplans, Managing Director of, said: “We are thrilled to have won this grant and be able to help communities shop local. As a previous local shop owner, I know how hard it is to thrive and compete with bigger retailers, and this pandemic would have only made that more difficult.
“Our ‘Community eCommerce’ project is set to launch in October, and the sophisticated platform will give local businesses an affordable way to compete and local communities an easy and efficient method to buy their groceries.”
Established in 2015, provides ePos, stock control and eCommerce for UK retailers through an easy-to-use software platform.
Last year it secured a £200,000 investment from venture capital firm Midven, using equity finance from the Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF) to fund its growth plans.
If you are interested in joining the ‘Community eCommerce’ project, or would like to find out more information, get in touch with Iain at

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The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership has now ceased trading and transferred all its functions to Shropshire Council working with Telford & Wrekin Council and Herefordshire Council, in line with the UK Government's plans for devolution.

The Marches LEP was established in 2011 and hands over an impressive legacy from its 13-year life. In that time the LEP invested over £196m in projects across the Marches, securing in excess of £100m of match funding and supported more than 66,000 business interactions.

The schemes supported have made tangible differences to local communities, increasing skills, creating jobs and improving the physical appearance of many towns.

We would like to thank all the LEP Board Members who have given their time freely over the life of the LEP, as well as all the staff who worked for the LEP over the years. We also want to thank our delivery partners, local education providers and local, regional and national stakeholders who helped us achieve so much.

The Marches Growth Hub will continue to support businesses and will be managed by Shropshire Council, supported by Telford and Wrekin and Herefordshire Councils. Each of the three Local Authorities will also continue to provide direct business support locally. Details of this support will be available through the Marches Growth Hub website and from the Local Authorities directly. Website: | email:

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