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Grant funding

Whether you are running a cafe, operating a business from home, or perhaps looking to scale up, you will need funds to establish and grow your company. Depending on the type of business, this requirement may vary from a few hundred pounds to multiple thousands. It is helpful to know what grant schemes are currently available and suitable for you.

Grants are a type of funding provided by the government and local councils. You don’t normally have to repay them, but you might have to meet some terms, for example a job creation target or deadline.

In order to access grant funding you need to have all of the capital available at the outset so that when it is approved you can purchase the goods and then reclaim the agreed amount back. It is important that you do not start the project or purchase the goods without getting grant approval first as funders will not pay the grant back retrospectively. With all grants you complete an initial eligibility form and if deemed an eligible business you will need to explain the project and how that will grow the business, improve product or services and/or help employ more staff. If agreed it is an eligible project the next stage is to complete a grant application. You will need to provide two or three quotes (depends on the grant) for each bit of equipment or building work. The grant application is then submitted to the grants panel for approval.

There are a number of different grants available so depending on the project and you may also be eligible for more than one! Examples include a grant funder who offers match funding programmes for capital and consultancy- they will match fund up to 40% – for projects costing up to £24,999 maximum grant £9,999.  They also match 50% funding for internships and knowledge exchange opportunities, which is collaboration between a business, a university and a graduate employee who will work with the business to achieve agreed goals.

One funder provides free support and funding contributions to SMEs in the transport and logistics sector or with a logistics function. The offer is a 1-2-1 free data assessment to see how you use your data and make recommendations on better opportunities to improve profit margins and reduce costs. Funding includes £1k to £10k Starter Booster Grant – for software or consultancy related to data. £10k to £20k Step Change Grant – if your project includes a new product or service and a £20k to £60k Transformation Grant – in addition to introducing a new product or service, this level of grant also would see a job created as a result of the funding being received.

Grant funding could give your business the boost it needs. Contact the BEST Growth Hub on 01702 417765 to speak to a Business Navigator who can advise on you on current grants and support you through the application process from start to finish.

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