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Create South East announces second cohort and new programme pathway for creative businesses in the South East

Create South East has announced the second cohort of 16 businesses to be taken on to its investment readiness programme, made possible by the Create Growth Programme, funded by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. Applications are open for future cohorts. Click here.

The announcement follows a visit by Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, the Rt Hon Lucy Frazer, to A+C Studios, a Margate-based animation studio who are in the first Create South East cohort. The visit coincided with the announcement of DCMS expanding the Create Growth Programme into six additional areas of England.

The Essex, Kent and Sussex-based creative businesses selected for the second cohort have already been taken through a business diagnostics session with industry experts and will now go on a 9-month programme to get their creative business ready for investment. The companies represent a range of creative industry subsectors, including broadcast, film, tv and animation, design, live performance and creative wellbeing. Companies will be mentored and take part in workshops and events specifically tailored to their cohort.

Dan Chilcott, Strategic Lead, Create South East, said: “We’re excited to be able to announce our second cohort of creative businesses and an additional pathway of support at Create South East. We’ve already seen how the first cohort has developed during their time on the programme, and can’t wait to see how these two new groups of company founders progress over the next six to nine months. The South East is a hot-bed for the creative industries, and our latest cohorts span the breadth of the creative subsectors, demonstrating the need for programmes like Create South East to help the businesses grow and reach their potential. I’d encourage any creative company seeking to scale and grow to apply.”

The companies in cohort two are:

  • AARVEN (Kent)
    Altered Gene (Kent)
    Analog Ltd. (Essex)
    ‘Cene Media Ltd. (Kent)
    Donna Forte Ltd. (Essex)
    DURTY Media Ltd. (Kent)
    Future of Film (Kent)
    LimboTech (Essex)
    Litta (Essex)
    LUMA-iD Ltd. (Kent)
    Made Happy Gifts Ltd. (Kent)
    Record Games Ltd. (West Sussex)
    RK Jewellery Designs Ltd. (Kent)
    Studio Go Go Ltd. (Essex)
    Unapologaytic (Brighton and Hove)

Alongside the second cohort, Create South East has invited 12 additional companies to take part in a 6-
month pathway of support aimed at helping businesses at an earlier stage, following demand from creative businesses in the area.

The 12 businesses invited are:

  • Buckle Up Entertainment (Essex)
    Kalikas Armour (Kent)
    Main Media Ltd. (Essex)
    MI Pixel Ltd. (Essex)
    Sensory Design & Technology (Essex)
    Squid Shack Studios (Kent)
    Swerve Games (Kent)
    TechNative Digital (Brighton and Hove)
    The Holding Time Project (Brighton and Hove)
    Unsettled Theatre (Kent)
    UTA Architects (Kent)
    Vaticinate Pictures Ltd. (Essex)

The Create South East programme is kicking off 2024 with an investment event in partnership with UKBAA and Creative Enterprise on 15th February in Brighton, which will include a keynote from games industry heavyweight Nick Button Brown about investment opportunities across the creative industries, alongside a creative business showcase, and networking.

This follows a busy end to 2023, where the programme held creative sector-specific events for fashion and screen. In collaboration with RÆBURN and The Lab E20, the team welcomed fashion companies from Sussex, Medway and the Thames Estuary region to hear from speakers including writer and cultural strategist Yasmin Jones-Henry, Founder and Creative Director Christopher Raeburn, and Professor Jane Harris, Director of the Fashion, Textiles and Technology Institute at University of the Arts London. Spotlight on Screen, which was run in partnership with BFI and Creative Enterprise, brought together screen-based companies from across the region.

Applications to apply for the final 9-month cohort are open from January 2024 – March 2024.
Create South East is one of 12 regions to run the Create Growth programme, which is being delivered by Angels @Essex, Creative UK and Screen South