A new canine company has become the latest business start-up to get help from Durham County Council’s partnership approach…

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Following a period of unemployment due to ill-health, Caniquest UK founder Matt Greensmith, was finding it difficult to get back into work. However with help from the council’s Employability Project and Generation NE Youth Employment Initiative – as well as the South Durham Enterprise Agency (SDEA) and plenty of determination – Matt now has a thriving new business and career.

An enthusiastic dog agility competitor and former worker in the agricultural sector Matt was inspired to start Caniquest UK which offers a wide range of canine supplies.

After being referred by the job centre, the employability team, SDEA and Generation NE worked together with Matt to provide support and advice for his new business as well as helping him access funding to help get started.

Matt said: “The time I spent unemployed was very frustrating so it’s amazing to be able to say that I’m now the proud owner of my own new business. I have a tremendous amount of gratitude towards everyone who helped me get Caniquest UK off the ground.”

Matt’s isn’t the only success story however as his website was designed by Infranautics, a website and software developing business was also launched thanks the partnership’s work.

Cllr Neil Foster, Cabinet member for economic regeneration, said: “Caniquest UK is a brilliant example of both the support the council provides and how we work in partnership with other organisations to help people like Matt not just get back into work but create entirely new businesses.”

As well as mentoring and careers advice to help people get back into work, the council’s Employability Project encourages people to start their own business, helping them develop their ideas and help them create their own career. For more information contact 03000 262 383.

Generation NE is a collaboration between five local authorities, including Newcastle, Durham, Gateshead, North Tyneside and Northumberland, and the North East LEP.

It aims to support over 2,000 young people aged between 17 and 24 years into work over the next three years. For more information call Generation NE on 0191 230 0491 or visit www.generationne.co.uk.

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