Partner with small, sustainable businesses to improve how you deliver public services

Our support programme empowers public sector organisations to work with small, London-based businesses that offer relevant sustainable products and services.

Public sector organisations are being called to solve increasingly complex problems: from tackling climate change, to driving inclusive economic growth and supporting the health and wellbeing of the communities you serve – and all within constrained finances. To face these challenges, public sector organisations need to explore new ways of working that can meet multiple challenges at the same time.

Whether you’re a local authority, a functional body of the Greater London Authority, an educational institution, or a non-departmental public body, partnering with local London-based businesses offers a way to innovate your services, and allows you to explore new, cost-effective service delivery models that also create co-benefits such as social value and local economic growth.

Small businesses in the circular economy offer promise for public sector organisations. In a circular economy, businesses help meet society’s needs by maximising the use of stuff at its highest possible value and minimising waste. In the process, these business models can reduce greenhouse gas emissions, regenerate nature, and create positive socio-economic opportunities, for example, by:

  • Limiting the extraction of raw materials and reducing our dependence on scarce resource to improve the resilience of our supply chains;
  • encouraging community cohesion by encouraging new forms of interaction between people and business; and,
  • creating new jobs and skills development opportunities in future-proof industries.

Public sector partnerships

London is host to a growing community of exciting, small businesses that disrupt how we consume and create positive climate and economic benefits in the process. Through ReLondon’s business transformation programme, we‘ve worked with over 400 businesses launching and scaling circular business models. These businesses have the potential to create 284,000 jobs by 2030 and contribute £24.2bn to London’s economy, whilst tackling over 56,000 tonnes of CO2e in a year alone.

As a public sector organisation, you can integrate the products and services of these small businesses into your activities in several ways, for example by:

  • Procuring products and services from small businesses that reduce waste and greenhouse gas emissions, either within your own operations or encouraging uptake across your supply chain;
  • Lending your assets and infrastructure in support of small businesses scaling their circular economy solutions – for example, retail or community spaces for businesses that promote sharing and repairing of items;
  • Influencing the business context (e.g. business rates, zoning rules) to favour those that reduce waste and increase reuse, repair, sharing or renting;
  • Promoting products and services that reduce how much we consume and throw away across your citizen-facing and business-facing networks; or,
  • Delivering parts of your reduction and recycling, climate action and economic development plans through pilots with small, local businesses that are scaling circular economy solutions.

Thanks to funding from London & Partner’s programme Grow London Early Stage programme ReLondon is bridging the gap between small, green businesses and public sector organisations. We are here to help you structure projects and partnerships with these businesses that deliver strategic benefits to your organisation and/or borough.

We offer a range of fully-funded support and advice, to help you understand the scope of innovations; explore what’s possible and where to begin this journey; as well as tools to find the small businesses that best meet your needs, such as the Circular Economy Matchmaker. Support is available to any public sector organisation across the UK.

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