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Evaluation of High Growth Start-Ups


The High-Growth Start-Ups (HGSU) programme was designed to provide various methods of assistance and support to eligible 'high growth' businesses in Fife. The aim of the evaluation was to assess the effectiveness of the overall approach to the delivery of HGSU since 2000-2001 and make recommendations on how the support would be delivered in future periods in the context of the ongoing delivery of Business Gateway services.


The methodology consisted of desk based research of programme level data including Client Development Plans and Quarterly Reports; face-to-face interviews with Scottish Enterprise Fife (SEF) staff from Growing Business and Business Gateway teams; face-to-face interviews with staff and advisers from Maitland Associates (the Programme provider); and face-to-face business interviews with client companies.


The evaluation found that feedback from assisted firms showed that the advice received from HGSU was, on average, considered to be good. However, it also found that the economic impacts generated by the HGSU programme did not provide good value for money.


The report recommends that the way the Programme is managed and operated be revised. It advises that changes be made in the following areas: marketing and recruitment; selection criteria and appraisal; duration; development plans and milestones; integration; nature of support; advisers; and monitoring.

Author O’Herlihy and Co Ltd; BiGGAR Economics
Published Year 2009
Report Type Evaluation
  • Enterprise
    Entrepreneurship/new firm formation, High growth entrepreneurship
  • Innovation
    Company building
  • Investment
    Investor readiness support