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04.07.07
Ruth Badger speaks to Cornwall's SMART Women

The star of the BBC series, 'The Apprentice', Ruth Badger will be sharing some of the secrets of her success at Cornwall's first ever conference for women in business.

Ruth was catapulted to fame last year as she competed for the top job with Sir Alan Sugar; she was hailed as 'the woman who could sell just about anything to anybody'. Today Ruth runs a successful business consultancy and is the star of her own TV show, 'Badger or Bust'.

Having proved her mettle to the nation she is welcomed as the keynote speaker at the SMART Women Conference, talking place on Friday 20th July at the Tremough Campus, University College Falmouth.

Ms Badger said: "This is a fantastic initiative and I'm pleased to be involved. Cornwall has recognised the importance of women to its economy and I applaud Cornwall College for leading with this SMART Women initiative.

"Cornwall is a beautiful and vibrant place, but, as with many areas it has it own issues and obstacles. Women are making a difference to the economy and this is an excellent opportunity for like-minded delegates to share their ideas, creative solutions and good advice."

Ms Badger's comments come on the back of some alarming statistics issued by the government last week. The figures show that the UK is playing catch-up to the United States when it comes to women entering business. The report stated that if the UK had the same rates of female entrepreneurship as the US it would have around 750,000 more businesses.

Although women-owned businesses contribute about £60 billion to the economy (Gross Value Added) the report stated, if more women joined the economy, UK productivity could be boosted by up to £23 billion – 2 per cent of GDP.

Carleen Kelemen, Director of the Objective One Partnership and patron of the SMART Women Project said: "Women in Cornwall are playing a vital part in building this region's future. Objective One has invested in several projects to support women in business and into the workplace. Cornwall is changing as its economy strengthens and these are exciting times to be involved in business here."

The SMART Women Conference is designed to be a dynamic and highly interactive one-day event to provide expert practical knowledge and inspiration to enlighten and empower women from across Cornwall. Tickets are £30 or £40 depending on sector and size.

Leading decision makers in Cornwall will also be at the conference to discuss plans for the future of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

John Latham, Principal of Cornwall College said: "Encouraging greater levels of management and entrepreneurship amongst women in Cornwall is important for the economy, new research has shown that women, more than men need strong, successful role models and we will have plenty of those at the SMART Women Conference."

The SMART Women conference brings women together to learn, network, grow and have fun by offering a non-stop programme of diverse workshops, unique and engaging speakers and one-to-one expert sessions. Delegates will share practical ideas on how to succeed in their careers while juggling complex and diverse life demands. In addition to Ruth Badger, the conference will feature a fantastic line-up of over 20 speakers from the South West who are pioneering leaders in their field. They will lead seminars, sharing their experience and offering practical advice for women in business. There will also be the opportunity to book a free fifteen minute advice session with a local lawyer, financial expert, life skills coach or business mentor and of course the chance to network with other women working in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

For more information and to book your place at the SMART Women Conference, go to www.smartwomenconference.co.uk or call 01209 617573.

The Conference is being managed and funded by the SMART Women Project with sponsorship from Business Link. The SMART Women project is an innovative management training programme, offering a free management course complemented by a comprehensive self development programme, psychometric assessment, mentoring and networking opportunities. For more information regarding the SMART Women Project, visit www.smartwomenproject.co.uk. The SMART Women Project is managed by Cornwall College Business and has been invested in by the Objective One Programme and the Learning & Skills Partnership.

For further information contact Tracey Johnson on 01726 226670/07884 215188 or email tracey.johnson@ccb.cornwall.ac.uk.

The Objective One Programme for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly has invested in the Combined Universities in Cornwall (CUC) project, both Phase 1 and Phase 2, through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the European Social Fund (ESF). Cornwall College, which manages SMART Women, is a partner of the CUC.

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Editor's notes:

Cornwall College Business is part of the Cornwall College Group; it delivers business skills training, professional qualifications, consultancy and apprenticeships.

The SMART Women project is run by Cornwall College Business.

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Clare Morgan
Media Relations Manager
Objective One Partnership Office
Castle House
Pydar Street
Truro TR1 2UD
Mobile: 07973 813647
Telephone: 01872 223439

cmorgan@cornwall.gov.uk

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