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Our Team

Operations and Compliance Manager

Jacqui Stimpson

Jacqui has worked at BEST Growth Hub since 2017 and is renowned for her passion and enthusiasm about business.  Her main motivation is to make a real difference to businesses in Essex by helping them access the help and support they need to be successful.

Jacqui’s career includes 26 years in banking, leadership, professional coaching and facilitation; this brings a breadth of experience in unlocking potential in people, businesses and support networks.  She has worked with public, private, corporate, SME, Sole Traders and 3rd sector organisations. In fact, Jacqui has  supported over 1000 SME’s from prestart to scale up and has a comprehensive knowledge of all support available and how to access it.

As the Operations and Compliance Manager Jacqui is responsible for all aspects of the day to day operation, monitoring, reporting and compliance within the Growth Hub and is responsible for the Business Navigator Team.

Jacqui also oversees the Peer Networks Programme for BEST. Her main aim is for cohort members to build trust together and create an environment for open, constructive, communication that brings real time solutions, ideas and opportunities for both business and personal growth.

jacquistimpson@southend.gov.uk

Business Navigators

Our local team of Business Support Navigators can help you identify relevant programmes, initiatives or funding schemes currently on offer across Essex, Southend and Thurrock and can help you access them.

Dawn Andrikopoulos - Business Navigator

Dawn comes from a background of enterprise in a wide range of industries, particularly leisure and tourism, before setting up her own company.

Dawn is passionate about being able to signpost businesses to the wealth of support available and improve the journey and success of every Essex business.

Dawn is available to meet in person at the Old Court House in Grays every Wednesday between 10am & 4pm.

DawnAndrikopoulos@southend.gov.uk

Mercy Mathews- Business Navigator

With an extensive list of 13+ years’ experience working with a number of private sector companies and local authorities, as well as most recently running her own business, Mercy has developed a wealth of knowledge and understanding of what is needed to ensure businesses are able to scale and grow and what opportunities they have to be able to do so.

In Mercy’s role as a Business Navigator, she uses her knowledge and understanding of business support to assist business owners in Essex access the right level of service available to successfully grow and scale their business.

Mercy is available to meet in person at the PATCH Workspace in Chelmsford every Thursday between 10am & 4pm.

MercyMathews@southend.gov.uk

Jacinda Love - Business Navigator

Jacinda is a communicator, connector and enthusiastic business advocate.

Over 20 years’ experience promoting businesses has given Jacinda expertise in finding business development solutions and connecting people to maximise business opportunities.

Working for and with business support agencies and local authorities in Essex Jacinda has an extensive knowledge of and access to the help that is available to businesses.

In Jacinda’s role as a Business Navigator, she uses her knowledge and motivation to achieve results for businesses looking to start and grow their enterprises.

Jacinda is available to meet in person at the Innovation Centre Knowledge Gateway in Colchester every Thursday between 10am & 4pm.

jacindalove@southend.gov.uk

Ben Cluett - Business Navigator

Ben joined the Junior Business Navigator role after leaving college and spending time in the hospitality industry. He recognises the importance of exceptional customer service and how it can benefit internal and external business environments. As an apprentice in this role, he is building the foundations to become a Business Navigator, aiming to support and liaise with clients and local businesses and provide the appropriate opportunities for them to grow. 

Ben’s objective is to learn more about local businesses and how best to help them through these challenging times. 

BenCluett@southend.gov.uk 

Communications and Marketing

The BEST Growth Hub Marketing and Communications team is always happy to help.  Please contact our team for requested copies of our Best Growth Prospectus or any marketing and PR enquiries at bestmarketing@southend.gov.uk

Murray Tkacziw - Business Administrator & Social Media Apprentice

Having worked in the production and delivery of printed packaging over the last 6 years, Murray has gained an understanding of how important quality control is in delivering a product that clients are happy with, and the levels businesses go to in order for their product/service (brand) to excel even at a basic level such as the way it’s packaged.

Whilst working as part of a small team, he realised how important it was to ensure everyone communicated regularly and clearly in order to achieve efficiency and limit mistakes

He has developed good customer service skills having regularly organised goods in and goods out, whether that be logistics, outwork or client pickups.

Murray is looking forward to his new role as Business Administrator and Social Media Apprentice for BEST and welcomes the opportunity to learn new skills, gain confidence, grow as a person and most importantly be part of a team dedicated to improving the community.

MurrayTkacziw@southend.gov.uk