SMALL and medium-sized businesses in Lancashire are being encouraged to take part in a new 'scale-up' programme.

Two Zero has been launched and funded by the county council and will focus on performance coaching, one-to-one advice and peer learning.

Amin Vepari has been appointed to head up the effort to enable SMEs to access new markets.

He said: "What sets Two Zero apart is that it is for those unique businesses with a goal of achieving 20 per cent year on year growth, which is a huge challenge."

Two further offshoots, Two Zero: Female and Northern Power Women, are being run by the hub.

County Cllr Michael Green added: "Profitable, growing businesses are vital to the success of Lancashire’s economy."