Southend Business Navigator to help local businesses grow and succeed

A newly appointed Business Navigator has joined Southend-on-Sea City Council’s economic inclusion team to help local businesses grow and succeed.

A young man in his 20's with dark hair smiling outside of the Victoria Centre. He is wearing a navy suit jacket over a light blue shirt.

Ben Cluett takes on the new fully funded role having previously worked with businesses across Essex, Southend and Thurrock during his time at the BEST Growth Hub.

The new navigator role forms part of three support programmes funded by the UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) which also includes Let’s Do Business Group financial advice and Deyton Bell Southend Lift Off offering free advice for start-ups and existing businesses.

Ben said: “Working with Southend-on-Sea City Council’s Economic Development team is an exciting opportunity for me, as I will be able to continue providing a service I love, and collaborating with our networks, support providers and the local business community.

“Local businesses can book a free impartial and confidential meeting with me and I will take them through our diagnostic process to get key insights about the business. I will explain everything about how our support providers and connections can assist you with your growth and development needs to help your business thrive.

“Being a free service provided by the council, you don’t need to worry about any hidden costs. Our aim is to create long standing relationships between the council and businesses across the city who make such a difference to our local economy. We can be there every step of your growth journey. There is no limit to the amount of time we can spend working together.”

Nick Brown, head of economic inclusion at Southend-on-Sea City Council, added: “In a time of real economic uncertainty, and reductions in government funding, we have worked hard to provide business support continuity with the creation of our Southend-centric, Business Navigator role.

“With the BEST Growth Hub no longer running, we wanted to make sure that businesses in our city would still have access to market-leading information, signposting them to available help. We are really pleased to have secured Ben because his passion and enthusiasm for local business will drive this forward.”

Ben will be actively contacting local businesses, but you can also get in touch with him via email at:

Published: 21st April 2023

Southend-on-Sea City Council