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Pathways To Scale programme

Are you a woman leading a growth business, looking to secure investment to scale up? Our Pathways To Scale programme (PTS) offers strategic advice, peer support and networking to help you prepare for investment.

We want to change that. Join our new Pathways To Scale (PTS) programme for female founders. The programme will run from August to November 2024 and will help your company prepare for investment to scale. 

About the programme

PTS is a programme for 10 to 12 women, running from August to November 2024. If you're a woman leading a growth business, it'll help you prepare for investment to scale.

The programme offers:

  • Strategic business growth and investment advice
  • The opportunity to apply for a 'Pathways To Scale Journey Fund' grant of up to £20,000
  • Peer support
  • Investor network building
  • Executive education – leadership, governance, sales, financial strategy, advanced pitching training 

PTS is a ‘whole person’ executive education experience. It has a focus on the unique challenges women may face in business.

It'll take you on a journey to help boost your confidence and improve networking. The programme will also significantly enhance your financial management skills to help support your company.


PTS is open to female company founders and co-founders of an established start up business of likely one to five years old.

Your business will need to be headquartered in Scotland and have some commercial traction (or progress). 

Your business will also need to be based in the Scottish Enterprise region. South of Scotland Enterprise (SOSE) and Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) based applicants aren't eligible. 

You'll need to be able to show that your business has ambition to scale. For example, it should: 

  • Likely have a turnover of around £100,000 plus
  • Be aiming to raise investment of £500,000 plus in the next 12 to 18 months – this should include plans to make capital investments to increase productivity
  • Likely have 2 to 10 full-time employees – so, the very early stages of growth, but beyond the initial start up phase
  • Have international ambition with clearly identifiable market opportunities and rationale for regions targeted to export, or be looking to grow your current exporting by 100% within the next 6 to 12 months
  • Have an innovative, scalable product or service, including a focus on key and future industries – for example: digital and tech, data and AI, energy, life sciences, quantum photonics, radio and semi-conductors, fintech, space, and industrial biotech as well as the broader clean energy industries

Full details 

The programme has three main elements, plus a final investor showcasing and networking event. There are different learning outcomes from each element of the programme.

Element 1 – leadership for scale retreat

This is a two-day immersive retreat with an overnight stay and a networking dinner. It also includes an 'insights for scaling' workshop.  

You'll learn: 

  • Learning outcome 1 – leadership skills for scaling up

Element 2 – executive education

You'll learn: 

  • Learning outcome 2 – strategic sales for scaling up
  • Learning outcome 3 – building your advisory board and governance
  • Learning outcome 4 – advanced pitching skills with one-to-one follow up sessions
  • Learning outcome 5 – strategic finance for scaling up with financial management and skills workshop

Element 3 – advice and specialist support

You'll learn: 

  • Learning outcome 6 – being aware of and able to access one-to-one financial and investment readiness support 
  • Learning outcome 7 – being aware of and able to access specialist Scottish Enterprise support at the right time, for example: digital, innovation, international and market research support

Investor showcase and networking event

A final investor showcase and networking event will also give you the opportunity to present your business, gain valuable constructive feedback and consolidate your learning.

You'll also get exposure to investors.

Apply for Pathways To Scale

Complete our application form and submit it to our team (the email address is shown in the form) by 11:59pm Sunday 21 July. 

Enquire about Pathways To Scale

Our team are on hand to answer your questions and explain the support we can offer to help your business succeed.

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