Wales politics

Aspiring leaders in Wales given £3.9m boost

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Media captionJane Hutt says the money will improve the performance of Welsh firms

A £3.9m scheme to improve leadership and management skills at businesses in north and west Wales and the valleys has been announced.

The three-year programme is designed to help around 600 "entrepreneurs and aspiring leaders".

Finance Minister Jane Hutt said it would help firms become more competitive and win new contracts.

Led by Swansea University in partnership with Bangor University, the project is receiving £2.7m from the EU.

Image caption Shaun Welsh and David Thomas set up Trojan Construction Management after being made redundant

Shaun Welsh, co-founder of Trojan Construction Management, in Treforest, near Pontypridd, Rhondda Cynon Taff, said such leadership training was "invaluable" when he and David Thomas set up the firm in 2012, after being made redundant.

The quantity surveyor said: "Though we had a great foundation and knowledge in construction, we knew little about business or running a company.

"The course enabled me to take a step back, and view the business from the outside.

"Since starting the course, our company has seen a growth in turnover and profit; we have employed more staff and put into place better procedures which are making all of our lives a lot easier."

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