Staffordshire businesses urged to apply for piece of £7m grant funding before deadline
February 1, 2018
Staffordshire businesses have less than a week left to apply for a piece of £7m in grant funding.
The current funding round of the Business Growth Programme (BGP) opened on January 15, 2018, and will close on Wednesday, February 7, 2018.
The package of support is designed to strengthen supply chains, stimulate innovation and grow existing Small to Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) across the Greater Birmingham and Solihull, Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire and The Marches Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs).
Eligible businesses must NOT be a franchise, charity, not-for-profit, or in the retail sector. You must be able to answer YES to the following points:
- Are you a Small to Medium sized Enterprise (SME) actively trading for 6 months or more? (The definition of an SME is that your business has between 1 and 249 employees, either an annual turnover of less than £35.5m, or a balance sheet less than £30.5m and be less than 25% owned by another company or combination of other companies).
- Do you operate largely on a Business to Business basis? (Business to Consumer/Retail business cannot account for more than 20% of turnover).
- Do you have a project which will grow your business, resulting in jobs being created? (£10,000 grant = 1 job creation)
- Can you deliver your growth project in a 4-month period following receipt of your offer of grant? (Priority will be given to investment-ready projects which can be completed within 4 months. Projects taking 4 to 6 months will only be considered under exceptional circumstances and with prior agreement.)
- Do you pay your business rates to one of the local authorities based within one of the three eligible LEP Areas? (i.e. Birmingham, Bromsgrove, Cannock, East Staffordshire, Herefordshire, Lichfield, Newcastle-Under-Lyme, Redditch, Shropshire, Solihull, South Staffordshire, Stafford, Staffordshire Moorlands, Stoke-on-Trent, Tamworth, Telford and Wrekin or Wyre Forest).
- Is your business activity listed as “eligible” on the attached Business Activity List?
- Do you have cash match? (Cash funding is the difference between the grant you are seeking and the remaining cost of your project. All applicants must provide cash funding which can be sourced from the private sector, but not other European Funds or Asset Finance). This cash match will need to be confirmed.
- You can obtain 3 competitive quotes (unless dealing with a very specialist item) for each element of the proposed expenditure? (Quotes for project expenditure should not be from persons or businesses connected to your business, directors or shareholders).
- Can you confirm that you can provide full financial accounts, or a Business Plan if you’ve only been trading for 6 months?
If you answered “YES” to all the above, contact the Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Growth Hub’s Business Helpline on 0300 111 8002, for FREE advice in completing your application.
Note 1: The use of consultants or third parties in completing the application form is an ineligible cost.
Note 2: The programme limits awards to one grant per SME from any ONE of the four components of the Business Growth Programme (ie you cannot apply for a grant from each component).