Business Funding Guide January 2013

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1 Business Funding Guide January 2013

2 Identifying sources of funding for business is a complex and time-consuming process. We appreciate that the eligibility criteria, company size, sector, location, and other constraints, plus the often limited availability of funding, are frustrating for all local businesses, and therefore have decided to bring together a guide summarising the currently available funding and finance for local businesses. We realise the picture will change and will update the document accordingly. Please contact either the Chamber or the Council's Economic Development team for further information; details are given at the end of this guide. Cllr Marie Rimmer Leader St.Helens Council Kath Boullen Chief Executive St Helens Chamber 1

3 Business Funding/Finance Sources Apprenticeships ( With a view to encouraging employers to take on apprentices, the National Apprenticeship Service will provide up to 40,000 Apprenticeship grants worth 1,500. The 1,500 is in addition to the training costs of the Apprenticeship framework, which are met in full for young people aged 16 to 18 and 50% for those aged 19 to 24. The fund is for SME employers recruiting 16 to 24 year olds. Apprentices for St.Helens ( Running from September 2012 to March 2014, the programme aims to furnish 200 new apprenticeship vacancies for local young people (aged 16 to 24). Businesses that take on an apprentice will be offered a subsidy of 2,500. This will be paid in three instalments: 800 at month 3, 800 at month 6 and 900 at month 9. Businesses will be assisted in the production of a job description and any specific criteria they need the young people to meet. Businesses will be required to submit a claim form each quarter accompanied by a copy of the apprentice s wage slip. The project is funded by St.Helens Council and delivered by St Helens Chamber. The fund is open to all businesses within the St.Helens area. Note that the grant will not be available for short-term or fixed-term contracts of employment it is for permanent vacancies only. Assisted Asset Purchase Scheme ( The scheme offers grant funding of up to 500,000 to purchase new fixed assets such as machinery and vehicles. SMEs with a turnover of less than 25m are eligible. Businesses must show that the asset purchase would not go ahead without RGF (Regional Growth Fund) support. For every 25,000 granted, one full-time employee position must be created. Big Society Capital (BSC) ( BSC enable organisations tackling social issues to grow by encouraging investments made for social as well as financial return. BSC only invest in social investment finance intermediaries (organisations set up to provide appropriate and affordable finance and support to social sector organisations). 2

4 Business Angel Co-Investment Fund ( The fund is able to make initial equity investments of between 100,000 and 1m in SMEs alongside syndicates of business angels (subject to geographical restrictions and upper limit of 49% of any investment round). Investment decisions will be made by the independent Investment Committee of the fund based on detailed proposals put forward by business angel syndicates. The fund aims to support early-stage SMEs with a high growth potential, particularly in areas worst affected by public spending cuts. Business Growth Fund (BGF) ( BGF will invest between 2m and 10m in return for an equity stake in the business and a seat on the board. Long-term funding over five to seven years (or more) is offered. BGF develops a partnership approach with investee businesses, agreeing shared goals and objectives from the outset. The fund carries out targeted due diligence in a cost-effective and timely manner. Established UK companies with an annual turnover of 5million that can demonstrate a strong growth trajectory are encouraged to apply. Investment opportunities and businesses in all sectors except Financial Services and Real Estate are considered. Chrysalis Fund ( The fund aims to kick-start regeneration across Merseyside. 30m will be invested in commercial property and regeneration projects throughout the City-region. Eligible local authorities include Liverpool, Sefton, Knowsley, St.Helens and Wirral. The investment policy is guided by the requirement to deliver projects within Merseyside s sites of regional importance but also more generally in terms of projects that support employment creation in areas of particular regeneration need. Coalfields Fund ( The fund offers investment of up to 1m in the form of equity and equity-related funding. In addition to providing finance, the fund also offers a broad range of support and guidance, assisting companies with their strategic, market and operational development, and in achieving their full potential. Companies at any stage in their development may apply for investment, from start-ups and early-stage companies, to ongoing development capital and management buy-outs and buyins of more established businesses. Only businesses in certain areas of St.Helens are eligible. The full list of eligible wards is: 3

5 Designing Demand ( Designing Demand is the Design Council s mentoring service for SMEs in the UK. Eligible businesses can receive up to 50% government support towards the cost of the mentoring service. Projects last between 6 to 10 months. Particular interest (but not exclusive) is shown in Advanced Manufacturing companies. Employer Ownership of Skills - Pilot ( The Employer Ownership pilot offers all employers in England direct access to up to 250m of public investment to design and deliver their own training solutions. The fund is looking for proposals from employers that demonstrate how they will improve skills in the workforce and use these improved skills to drive up productivity and growth. N.B. The fund has two rounds. The deadline for round two applications is 28th February, Enterprise Capital Funds (ECFs) ( Enterprise Capital Funds (ECFs) use Government funding alongside private sector investment. The fund targets young, innovative firms that find it difficult to secure equity finance. Enterprise Finance Guarantee (EFG) ( EFG is a loan guarantee scheme designed to make possible additional lending to SMEs lacking the security or proven track record for a commercial loan. Accredited lenders deliver the scheme; there are currently 45 accredited lenders, including all main UK High Street Banks. EFG is open to businesses with an annual turnover of up to 41m seeking loans between 1,000 and 1m, repayable over a period of 3 months to 10 years. Export Finance ( Export Credit Guarantee Department offers a range of banking guarantees and insurance products. UK exporters are eligible. 4

6 Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP) ( KTP partners businesses with UK universities and colleges, enabling businesses to access the knowledge and expertise available within those institutions. Projects are carried out by high-calibre graduates, with support from universities. Businesses usually contribute 1 3 of total costs. Projects can be from 10 weeks to 3 years. KTP supports UK businesses wanting to improve their competitiveness, productivity and performance. Low Carbon and Green Innovation Funding The fund promotes innovation in Carbon Capture, has an Energy Entrepreneurs fund, supports innovation in component manufacture, and facilitates energy saving in building and construction. For a full list of schemes, see the following website: Businesses concerned with low carbon and environmental issues should apply. Manufacturing Advisory Service (MAS) ( The service offers SME manufacturers a free Manufacturing Review. Subsidised Consultancy Support for SMEs is offered (MAS can provide up to 50% of the cost for Step Change projects, up to a value of 3,000). Training and networking events are also on offer. The fund is for SMEs within the manufacturing sectors. Merseyside Special Investment Fund - Merseyside Loan and Equity Fund ( The fund s main focus is to enable businesses to expand. Funding can be used to finance asset purchases or provide working capital to service new contracts. Management Buy-Outs (MBOs) and acquisitions will also be considered. This funding is in the form of loans, mezzanine and equity finance from 50,000 to 2million. Loans of between 50,000 and 150,000 on a 3-5 year basis with a fixed interest rate currently between 7% and 10%. Mezzanine investments of between 150,000 and 500,000. Equity funding from 500,000 to 1.5m. Established SMEs based on Merseyside should apply. 5

7 Merseyside Special Investment Fund - Merseyside Small Loans for Business Fund ( MSIF also manages the Merseyside Small Loans for Business Fund, providing loans from 3,000 to 50,000. SMEs from most sectors - excluding property - can apply. The fund is particularly interested in financing businesses with technology and innovations such as those within biotechnology, creative, digital and energy industries. Microfinance ( Microfinance programmes (loans under 25,000) are run by the European Union. The EU does not directly provide microloans to individuals or businesses, but provides guarantees, loans and equity to intermediaries who can then lend to small businesses or make available equity finance. See the above website to find out how businesses can contact a microfinance provider in the country. Self-employed people and businesses with fewer than 10 employees should apply. National Loan Guarantee Scheme ( Guaranteed by the Government, the NLGS reduces the cost of business loans, hire purchase agreements and commercial leases. Individual participating banks determine the minimum and maximum amounts that businesses can borrow. UK SMEs with a turnover of up to 50m, and who are not in financial difficulty, will be eligible to benefit from the scheme. North West Business Angels ( Funding is provided by private investors for companies with the capacity for rapid growth. The Business Angels offer equity from 20,000 to 500,000. Businesses must demonstrate a competitive advantage: a clear technological advantage, a novel product or service, or an innovative distribution channel. 6

8 North West Fund - Biomedical The fund targets the Biomedical sector (which, for this fund, is defined as anything that affects patient care). Primarily, the fund aims to nurture passionate people with good ideas and innovative products. A detailed business plan is not necessary: the fund will help people to develop an initial idea into an explicit business plan if it is felt to have potential. Finance from 50,000 to 2m for growth-orientated businesses in the Biomedical sector is available: pharmaceuticals (research, development and manufacture of drugs and biopharmaceuticals); biotechnology; diagnostics; clinical research organisations; contract manufacturing organisations; analytical services and sciences; and healthcare technologies and medical devices. North West Fund - Business Loans ( The fund offers a source of debt investment. Finance ranges from 50,000 to 250,000. Loans can typically be repaid over 3.5 to 5 years. Growing SMEs who are struggling to find finance from traditional sources should apply. North West Fund - Development Capital ( The fund offers investment capital finance from 100,000 to 2m. Finance is for trading businesses generating cash flow. North West Fund - Digital and Creative ( The fund offers a source of finance. Finance from 50,000 to 2m is available. If businesses are deemed to be incompatible with the fund, they will be directed to alternative forms of finance, including Access to Finance ( The fund targets growth-orientated businesses in the Digital and Creative industries (e.g. software, hardware, social networking, gaming, electronic publishing). 7

9 North West Fund - Energy and Environmental ( Finance from 50,000 to 2m is available. The fund targets growth-orientated businesses in the Energy and Environmental Technology industries. Businesses that focus on the following are eligible to apply: Cleaner fuel production Electricity or heat generation The transportation of heat and electricity The end use of energy in transport, industry and the built environment Water and waste-water treatment Recycling and waste management. North West Fund - Venture Capital ( In return for an equity share, the fund provides risk capital, ranging from 50,000 to 2m. People-focused, the fund will assist those who exhibit raw talent and eagerness. The fund invests in Management Break Outs, helping successful managers to build up their own business. New and early-stage start-up companies that are based in, or relocating to, the North West are eligible (companies must be less than 3 years old and/or have an annual turnover of less than 1m). Most industry sectors are covered, excluding Energy, Environmental, Biomedical, Digital and Creative. R&D Tax Credits ( Company tax relief designed to reduce a company s tax bill, or provide a cash sum for smaller companies. SMEs: 150% of qualifying R&D expenditure may be deducted when calculating taxable profits. Larger companies: deductible amount is 125%. Both SMEs and larger companies spending at least 10,000 on R&D activities during the accounting period of the company are eligible to apply. Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS) ( Designed to encourage entrepreneurship, this is a Government scheme. SEIS will provide income tax relief for individuals who invest in qualifying companies. SEIS investors can input 100K into a single company in a single tax year, rising to a maximum of 150K over two or more tax years. Investors receive 50% tax relief in the tax year the investment is made, irrespective of their marginal rate. 8

10 Companies invested in by a SEIS investor must: be based in the UK not employ in excess of 25 workers be a start-up business have assets of less than 200K trade in an approved sector (generally not in finance or investment). TR&DE ( v2.0 June 2011.pdf) TR&DE provides intensive, specialist support to businesses. Grant Thornton and EV provide support and advice. Up to 3,000 in match funding to implement a tailored programme to assist the company's development is available. The fund targets NW businesses that would like to develop R&D commercial potential. Technology Strategy Board (TSB) ( Technology Strategy Board operates a range of assistance programmes and funded competitions. Funding is open to all UK companies. Note that some restrictions apply (grants such as SMART are assessed in batches and competitions for specific areas of research are time-limited). Waste Prevention Loan Fund (WPLF) ( WPLF aims to enable organisations to introduce business models and processes which make more efficient use of material resources, such as product reuse, repair and upgrading services (e.g. through leasing), and materials recovery and reuse by the manufacturer. Loans of between 100,000 and 1m are available. Applicants will need to demonstrate new approaches which offer substantial resource savings and can be scaled-up and replicated to have significant benefit at the national level. WRAP ( WRAP s vision is a world without waste, where resources are used sustainably. A Resource Efficiency Tool (a free interactive tool that assesses how a business is managing its resources) is offered. WRAP provides tailored, practical solutions (helps with the raising of finance, access to grants, marketing and sales). The Anaerobic Digestion Loan Fund (ADLF): a minimum of 50,000 and a maximum of 1m. The fund targets recycling businesses. 9

11 Loan Grant Equity investments Start-up SME Manufacturing Research and Development Low carbon/ environmental Energy Biomedical Biotechnology Digital and Creative industries Apprenticeships/ graduates Apprenticeships (p2) Apprentices for St.Helens (p2) Assisted Asset Purchase Scheme (p2) Big Society Capital (BSC) (p2) Business Angel Co-Investment Fund (p3) Business Growth Fund (BGF) (p3) Chrysalis Fund (p3) Coalfields Fund (p3) Designing Demand (p4) Employer Ownership of Skills - Pilot (p4) Enterprise Capital Funds (ECFs) (p4) Enterprise Finance Guarantee (EFG) (p4) Export Finance (p4) Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP) (p5) Low Carbon and 'Green' Innovation Funding (p5) Manufacturing Advisory Service (MAS) (p5) Merseyside Loan and Equity Fund (p5) Merseyside Small Loans for Business Fund (p6) Microfinance (p6) National Loan Guarantee Scheme (p6) North West Business Angels (p6) North West Fund - Biomedical (p7) North West Fund - Business Loans (p7) North West Fund - Development Capital (p7) North West Fund - Digital and Creative (p7) North West Fund - Energy and Environmental (p8) North West Fund - Venture Capital (p8) R&D Tax Credits (p8) Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS) (p8) TR&DE (p9) Technology Strategy Board (TSB) (p9) Waste Prevention Loan Fund (WPLF) (p9) WRAP (p9) 10

12 For further detail on funding sources, please contact: St.Helens Council Economic Development Town Hall Victoria Square St.Helens WA10 1HP St Helens Chamber Salisbury Street St.Helens Merseyside WA10 1FY Access to Finance M

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