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The Alternative Board celebrates tenth anniversary in Manchester West

The Alternative Board celebrates tenth anniversary in Manchester West
The Alternative Board celebrates tenth anniversary in Manchester West

Manchester entrepreneur Paul Winterbottom has beaten off competition in the UK to be named Franchisee of the Year by The Alternative Board (TAB).

Paul received the award after achieving phenomenal success with his Manchester West business, which he founded 10 years ago. This is the fourth time Paul has won the coveted title, as he continues to support local SMEs including Howorth Air Technology and MLP Law.

Last week, over 25 TAB members and Paul’s colleagues joined him to celebrate his 10th anniversary with a guided walk around Turton, Entwistle and Wayoh reservoirs in Lancashire.

Paul’s members participate in monthly face-to-face peer board meetings where they share and resolve professional and personal challenges. Members also benefit from private 1:1 coaching sessions that cover everything from strategic planning to recruitment and exit strategies.

Paul’s dedication to building long-term relationships with local entrepreneurs is evident in his commitment to their growth and success. His TAB boards have attracted over 20 local entrepreneurs from industries such as professional services, manufacturing, software development, media, construction and technology.

“TAB’s success in Manchester West is down to the quality of the members on my boards,” says Paul. “TAB delivers value because of the time and energy that each business owner puts into their membership. These are people who are not just focused on improving their own business, but who genuinely care about helping their colleagues succeed.

“I have three members celebrating their 10th anniversary with TAB this year, and another three in 2025. It’s been great to help these businesses grow over the past 10 years and I’m delighted that they continue to get great value from TAB as their businesses grow.”

As business in Manchester changes, particularly in the technology sector, Paul’s leadership also supports SMEs in adapting to the pressures of increased competition and recruitment challenges:

“Manchester’s newfound status as the largest technology hub outside London has brought great opportunities, but has also thrown the balance out of whack for many digital and technology businesses,” continued Paul. “Identifying approaches to ensure they can compete with the heavyweights has become crucial. For many employees, feeling valued and buying into a company’s culture is just as important as the financial rewards, and that’s where my members focus. Attracting and retaining staff by focusing on all the benefits that a flexible, locally owned SME can offer.”

Paul was previously a banker at NatWest/RBS and spent over 25 years providing commercial advice to SME clients. When he left banking and sought a new challenge, he was delighted to find a franchise in TAB where he could use his experience to help other business owners change.

In the UK, over 1,500 SME entrepreneurs have benefited from TAB. Businesses that worked with TAB saw an impressive 28.4 per cent average turnover growth between 2020 and 2021, with 80 per cent saying their turnover had increased since joining TAB. TAB is the world’s largest franchise system offering peer advisory boards and business coaching to business owners.