EU funding will help small businesses tender for large projects in the run up to the 2012 Olympics

The Government Office for the South East has been awarded almost £7m of EU funding to support the built environment and sports sectors in the run up to the 2012 Olympic Games.

Part of the funding will be spent on a scheme to help construction SMEs form consortia to bid for large projects for which they would be unable to tender as a single organisation. The scheme, called “Bidding for Gold”, will be run by the CIOB, the South East Centre of the Built Environment and Business Link.

Chris Blythe, CIOB chief executive said: “SMEs are the backbone of our industry and we believe that helping them achieve their potential is vital to the regional economy…We hope to see this rolled out nationally in due course so that everyone can benefit from the opportunity to improve.”

The programme, which will involve training workshops and networking opportunities, will be launched in Ascot in November. It will run until June 2008.