Press Release

Entrepreneur and former Dragons’ Den investor Piers Linney has teamed up with Vodafone for the launch of its new V-Hub business support platform, aimed at helping small businesses to be more effective, and safer, online.

V-Hub users will have access to one-to-one support with a dedicated business adviser, as well as to an online knowledge centre that will be continually updated. Unlimited access to the V-Hub and the advisers will be free throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.

Piers, who has over 15 years’ experience in running and guiding successful businesses, will be providing informative content for the V-Hub platform, highlighting his best tips and tricks for running a business. Piers will also be joining the V-Hub one-to-one advisory team for a day to provide guidance over the phone to small businesses.

The V-Hub launch comes as research conducted by Vodafone has found 77% of small businesses feel they need to make better use of digital tools to grow their business, and 82% need to expand their presence online. 40% felt that lack of online sales knowledge has held them back during the Covid-19 crisis, and one in four felt they didn’t know enough about online security threats.

The Vodafone V-Hub platform can be found here: The service is simple to navigate – users select which online discipline they are keen to focus on, and then are matched to an advisor. The V-Hub provides content for the following areas:

Building an online presence – including web design, selling online, and marketing, essential to surviving the Covid-19 crisis

Online security – helping to protect small businesses from the massive rise in cyber-attacks since the Covid-19 crisis began

Remote working – something that has quickly become a necessity, raising challenges around well-being, productivity, satisfaction and security

Piers Linney, Entrepreneur and Vodafone V-Hub Advisor, said: “Vodafone’s V-Hub platform is an excellent resource for any small business looking for tips and solutions to improve their digital operations. As the economy continues to steer itself through the Covid-19 crisis, businesses will be more reliant than ever on being online – many small businesses need to upskill, not just to make the most of being online, but to do it safely and securely. Digital skills in the current climate could prove essential to their survival.”

Anne Sheehan, Director, Vodafone UK, said: “It is so important to the UK that the small business community makes it through this crisis. We’ve made broadband and Microsoft 365 free for six months, and now we’re providing free access to guidance that can help businesses build their online presence, or get online for the first time. We’ve helped our customers through plenty of change over three decades at Vodafone, but never has the pace of change been so rapid and so vital to staying afloat. We are here to help you navigate these changes, and make the most of new opportunities.”

New and insightful content will be regularly added to the platform, including episodes of Vodafone’s new weekly podcast, Business Unusual, created to offer guidance to the small business community. Each week, Claudia Winkleman will speak with a different small business owner to discuss their approach to dealing with changes and challenges, before and during the Covid-19 crisis.

Last month, Vodafone made Business Broadband and Microsoft Office 365 free for six months to support the UK’s small business community. Vodafone also implemented a new policy for businesses that are most at risk within its supply chain to ensure that micro and small suppliers are paid within 15 days.