Key announcements

Due to essential maintenance, our housing rents online service will be unavailable from Friday 21 January at 5pm until Monday 24 January at 9am. We apologise for any inconvenience. Coronavirus remains a serious health risk. It’s important to stay cautious and help protect yourself and others. Continue to follow national guidance.

Business start-up

What you need to do

  • Research your idea. Is it unique? What is your market and who are the competition. Don’t be afraid to seek advice from family and friends as well as business start-up experts.
  • Do you have all of the skills required? Do you require training? Will you need to employ staff with the skills you require?
  • Do you have sufficient finance in place? Are there grants available to help?
  • Have you written a Business Plan? A good business plan focuses the mind as well as helping to secure finance and support for starting a business.

Where to find help

The Business Library offers access to a range of online databases including COBRA. This database is a complete, online business reference tool which contains business information factsheets, business opportunity profiles and UK market synopses. This can be accessed from home if you hold a current Birmingham Libraries card.

The Business Library also provides access to further online resources, such as market research reports, company information and credit reports . See our page on Business Databases for further information.

The Business Library also provides 1 to 1 business advice sessions helping you to access the right information in the early stages of your business. We also provide 1 to 1 advice sessions on intellectual property (trademarks, copyright etc.) which you will need to consider when starting a business of your own.

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