Institute for Sustainability - RE:Start Local renewable energy/low-carbon business development

RE:Start Local specifically supported SMEs to gear up and secure more of the emerging renewable energy/low-carbon business in the South East region.

The business opportunity for renewable energy and upgrading the energy efficiency of the current building stock in the South East region was estimated to be over £20 billion. The procurement and supply chain opportunities for local small and medium businesses (SMEs) within this market was identified as being very significant, but a number of key barriers existed that inhibited these businesses from realising their full potential.

We provided services and support to SMEs across Milton Keynes and Aylesbury Vale, including:

  • Arranging business networking and ‘meet the buyer’ events.
  • Providing tailored seminars on relevant topics including Green Deal, ECO, MCS and the Renewable Heat Incentive.
  • Providing information on financing options to help develop a business or bring a new product to market.
  • Fostering research and development links with other businesses.
  • Working with us as a knowledge base.
  • Supporting them over the telephone, via email and through an electronic newsletter.
  • Providing one-to-one support to businesses working in the construction, energy efficiency and renewables sectors to help them better prepare  for the new 'green' markets including;
    • Business needs analysis.
    • Tender search.
    • Funding.


The programme provided a framework to support local SMEs to:

  • Compete for large public and private sector contracts.
  • Learn how to enter the renewable sector.
  • Grow their business.
  • Learn how to get maximum benefit from new funding schemes.
  • Learn which clients are planning and undertaking renewable energy and retrofit work locally.
  • Gain technical support from us through knowledge transfer activity.
  • Find out about local initiatives through our website and seminars.
  • Access renewable energy and building retrofit investment opportunities in Milton Keynes & Aylesbury Vale.
  • Hear what buyers and investors need from a supplier.
  • Network with other SMEs and link up with them in local supply chains.

By the end of the project, 50 SMEs in Milton Keynes and Aylesbury Vale had been assisted to improve their performance and/or be involved in a business network, thereby helping them enhance their performance and create new jobs.  

Related services

Grant Management

We provide a fully auditable service for designing, administrating and distributing local authority energy efficiency grant funding.

Project Management & Development

We have extensive experience in effective project management and development. With our diverse skill set including: technical, communication, public engagement and facilitation expertise we can support any project large or small; in the UK or beyond. In addition to our ability to write successful funding bids, our skills enable us to provide comprehensive project support.