Creative Growth Initiative

The Creative Growth Initiative was a highly successful project to help the growth of creative, cultural and digital businesses in Liverpool. The project was funded by the European Regional Development Fund and managed by ACME, the creative industries business development unit at Liverpool Vision.

David Parrish was the lead consultant on the project and was central to the project’s design, management and success. Businesses were selected according to their potential to grow, create jobs, increase exports and increase their Gross Value Added (GVA).

The Creative Growth Initiative project offered training workshops on business development and individual consultancy advice sessions on business growth from David Parrish. These confidential meetings focused on the most appropriate ways for each business to grow and create jobs.

Read what creative businesses in Liverpool say about the Creative Growth Initiative project – see bottom of page.

Video featuring businesses supported by this project

This video can also be viewed on YouTube and Vimeo

Film production by a sense of place in Liverpool.

Businesses featured include Milky Tea Ltd, Kirsty Doyle, Smiling Wolf Ltd, Ilsa Parry, AdLib Audio and Active Profile Ltd.

Creative and digital businesses in the city benefited from this expert advice. Cultural organisations were also assisted by the project.

David has a background in the cultural sector and was commissioned by Culture Liverpool to design and deliver the ‘Fit for the Future’ programme of business support for arts organisations in the city.

Creative enterprises trading as limited companies, registered self-employed individuals, or business partnerships were eligible for support through this scheme.

“As an economic development agency, we help creative and digital businesses to grow and create jobs. We are judged on results, so we use Dave as a business adviser because he delivers results.”
Kevin McManus. Head of Sector Development: Creative/Digital
Merseyside ACME / Liverpool Vision

David is a specialist business adviser with international experience of developing businesses and organisations in the creative and digital industries. He has a background in the creative and cultural sector and experience of leading creative businesses through periods of growth. He has professional qualifications in business, marketing and leadership, including ‘Chartered Marketer’ status.

David is also the author of two books written especially for creative, digital and cultural enterprises. These are ‘T-Shirts and Suits: A Guide to the Business of Creativity’ and ‘Chase One Rabbit: Strategic Marketing for Business Success’.

What creative entrepreneurs in Liverpool said about the Creative Growth Initiative:

“Since working with Dave our business has expanded significantly. We regard Dave as a friend and it’s always useful to be able to talk through business growth options with a professional and experienced adviser who understands the creative sector like he does.”
Matt Houghton
Loaf Creative Ltd

“David is a marketing expert who understands and emphasises the importance of strategic marketing when growing a business. It’s really helpful to be able to talk things through with him as we grow.”
Rhiannon Eames-Jones
Milky Tea Ltd

“Brava Design is well established and now at a point where it needs to step up its marketing to a new level. David is really valuable as a ‘sounding board’ and ‘critical friend’. He was able to help us focus on the best market segments for us to grow the business.”
Stephanie Hosny
Brava Design

“The support from ACME and the advice from Dave Parrish has already been brilliant. Dave helped us to see things differently and identify new opportunities in a fast-changing and challenging world. He also helped us to develop and implement a new business model for the organisation which will ensure that we go from strength to strength.”
Paul Ainsworth
Ariel Trust

“Firstly, David is a great listener. This is a skill which is sometimes overlooked and it provides a great platform, along with his wealth of experience and strategic thinking, to offer great advice. He’s added clarity to the challenges facing our company and given us a clear perspective going forwards.”
Christopher McInerney
CM2 Creative Ltd

“My meeting with David was like a breath of fresh air.  He allows you to take a step back from the business to see it from a new point of view and appreciate the bigger picture.  He has given me a new sense of confidence to move forward with the business knowing we are firmly on the right path.  Highly Recommended.
Christian Hughes
Curly Productions Ltd

“Since meeting David he has helped us build relationships with follow creatives within Merseyside which have resulted in key working partnerships on several projects. Through his knowledge of our industry sector, we have also received excellent help and advice in regards to the day to day running of our business.”
Gavin Sherratt
It’s About Websites

“David’s advice was really insightful. As our team grows, we are improving our management systems and having David to discuss the best way forward was very helpful.”
Michelle Helsby
Evolve Productions Ltd

“Dave’s knowledge, experience and coaching is highly applicable and relevant to any creative business in the twenty-first century. His advice has opened doors to exciting new opportunities and helped to avoid the many pitfalls along the way.  He is a highly insightful and trustworthy mentor.  It is a sheer pleasure to brainstorm with Dave and he has the ability help you stay focused after inspiring a batch of useful ideas. Whatever your vehicle of creativity is, Dave gives you the keys to make that car move while also providing a reality-based road map to help you get to your destination.”
John Scotland
Multi-Platform Video Production

“I was lucky to receive advice from Merseyside ACME and this helped me focus on what is important for me and finding ways of earning a living from what I do, and love. Since then, I have seen my business grow and develop in the right direction, and my sessions with David are like milestones for my growth. It helps me set up new objectives and be ambitious with who I am targeting for my next projects. Taking the next steps can be a daunting experience, and having the support and advice from ACME at this critical time is a precious gift.”
Laurence Payot

“Working with Dave has been amazing. Dave is different from most consultants; instead of giving you direct answers to your questions, he helps you to look at things in a different way. For me, that’s been really powerful. I would highly recommend Dave.”
Jonny Gibaud
Designer and Entrepreneur