Funding to help grow your business

Funding is available from various sources to help businesses in East Staffordshire identify and achieve their growth potential.

Eligibility for funding varies depending on the size of your business, the sector in which your business operates and your plans for growth. As a general rule of thumb, most funds require that businesses create or safeguard at least one job for every £5,000 to £10,000 awarded.

All funds are subject to the money being available, so please always check before you start your application that there is sufficient funding left to ensure your time and effort is worthwhile.  Many have now closed but the Local Enterprise Partnerships are in the process of bidding for additional money, so we hope to see a further phase of grants available from Spring 2016. 

If you are interested in funding, please complete our business funding enquiry form.

The main sources of funding currently available to East Staffordshire businesses include:

Staffordshire LEADER Programme

£2.24 million awarded to the Staffordshire ‘Communities Mean Business’ LEADER Programme

The Staffordshire ‘Communities Mean Business’ LEADER programme is funded through the Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE) 2014-2020 under the LEADER Approach utilising money from the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development.

The Programme is designed to develop and deliver projects to rural areas through community led regeneration. The Staffordshire LEADER programme is now ‘live’ and the second ‘call for bid’ round has been issued (open from 14th March-24th April 2016). Details of the second round of bidding and how to apply can be found here: http://staffsleader.org.uk/

Please contact the Programme Team before completing an Outline Application Form. The Team will discuss your project idea with you and assess whether it fits within the Staffordshire LEADER Approach. The Programme team will also go through the application process and will explain what is required of you. Jen Shuttleworth - Staffordshire LEADER Programme Support Officer Jennifer.shuttleworth@staffordshire.gov.uk or cmb.leader@staffordshire.gov.uk.

The Business Growth Programme,

for supply chain, innovation and expansion....don't delay, the funds are available strictly on a first come first served basis....

.... offers suite of grant programmes:

  • The Business Development Programme
  • The Business Innovation Programme
  • Green Bridge
  • HS2 supply chain

The Business Development Programme

Aimed at a broad range of small B2B businesses looking to expand, relocate and improve access to markets. Supporting businesses looking to expand, relocate and undertake marketing activities.  Offering £10k - £20k of capital and revenue grant funding towards:

Type of eligible spend:

  • Capital equipment
  • Relocation and expansion of SMEs
  • Market development
  • Coaching and mentoring.

Operating in accordance with de minimis regulations and offering assistance up to a maximum of 60% eligible costs.

The scheme is now live. Visit the Birmingham web pages to find out more www.birmingham.gov.uk/bdp. Call our Business Support Officer to find out if your business is eligible on 01283 508 625

The Business Innovation Programme

Aimed at encouraging innovative production processes leading to new products and services close-to-market. Offering £10k - £30k of capital and revenue grant funding towards:

Type of eligible spend:

  • Capital equipment
  • New product development (concept development, prototyping, product testing and product launch)
  • Market development
  • Business innovation mentoring and coaching

Eligibility:

SMEs must be from one of the following business sectors:

  • Advanced materials and manufacturing#
  • Aerospace
  • Building technologies
  • Business and professional services
  • Digital media
  • Environment and energy technologies
  • Food and drink
  • IT and digital
  • Medical technologies
  • Rail

Operating in accordance with de minimis regulations and offering assistance up to a maximum of 60% eligible costs.

The scheme is now live. Visit the Birmingham web pages to find out more www.birmingham.gov.uk/bip.   Call our Business Support Officer to find out if your business is eligible on 01283 508 625

Green Bridge Supply Chain Programme for SME's

The Green Bridge Supply Chain Programme is targeted at existing Small to Medium Sized (SMES) supply chain companies working solely for other businesses (B2B). Operating in or expanding into the green economy, demonstrating quantifiable green benefits (ie energy efficiency, waste management, recycling and renewables) 

Offering £20k - £150k of capital and revenue grant funding towards:

Type of eligible spend:

  • purchase of capital equipment
  • new product development
  • market development
  • mentoring and coaching.

Eligibility:

SMEs must be from one of the following business sectors:

  • Advanced engineering
  • Aerospace
  • Building technologies
  • Low carbon and renewable energy
  • Electronics
  • Other manufacturing
  • Transport and logistics

Operating in accordance with General Block Exemption Regulations (GBER)  and offers assistance of 10%-50% of eligible costs.

The scheme is now live. Visit the Birmingham web pages to find out more www.birmingham.gov.uk/greenbridge.   Call our Business Support Officer to find out if your business is eligible on 01283 508 625

HS2

Developed in direct response to HS2 investment opportunities to address barriers to growth for SMEs. Targeted at existing B2B supply chain Small to Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs) which have, or are in the process of securing, or have the ability to secure a contract for HS2.

Offering £20k - £200k of capital and revenue grant funding.

Type of eligible spend:

  • purchase of capital equipment
  • application of innovative advance technologies
  • building information modelling
  • market development
  • mentoring and coaching

Operating in accordance with General Block Exemption Regulations (GBER)  and offers assistance of 10%-50% of eligible costs. The scheme is now live. Visit the Birmingham web pages to find out more https://www.birmingham.gov.uk/info/20199/business_growth_programme/472/hs2_supply_chain_programme. Call our Business Support Officer to find out if your business is eligible on 01283 508 625

Business Innovation Centre (BIC)

Aim of Fund: The BIC can help companies to grow their business by providing advice and support on innovation and new product development.

Capital or revenue: Both

Amount: Up to £2,500

Status: Open for applications

More information: Tel: 01782 333798, email: enquiries@thebic.co.uk ,web: https://www.thebic.co.uk/funding-advice/

Jobs and Growth Fund

Aim of the fund: Business growth, job creation and protection

Capital or revenue: Capital

Status: Open for applications

Closing date for applications: March 2017

Amount: £10,000 - £1m

Project total: Minimum - £40,000  Maximum - £5m

Business Development Fund

This programme is now closed

More information: More information on the Business Development Fund and details of the entry requirements can be found on the Business Development Fund page.

Innovative Growth in Stoke and Staffordshire (IGISS)

This programme is now closed.

High Growth Investment Programme

This programme is now closed.

Staffordshire LEADER Programme

£2.24 million awarded to the Staffordshire ‘Communities Mean Business’ LEADER Programme

The Staffordshire ‘Communities Mean Business’ LEADER programme is funded through the Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE) 2014-2020 under the LEADER Approach utilising money from the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development.

The Programme is designed to develop and deliver projects to rural areas through community led regeneration. The Staffordshire LEADER programme is now ‘live’ and the second ‘call for bid’ round has been issued (open from 14th March-24th April 2016). Details of the second round of bidding and how to apply can be found here: http://staffsleader.org.uk/

Please contact the Programme Team before completing an Outline Application Form. The Team will discuss your project idea with you and assess whether it fits within the Staffordshire LEADER Approach. The Programme team will also go through the application process and will explain what is required of you. Jen Shuttleworth - Staffordshire LEADER Programme Support Officer Jennifer.shuttleworth@staffordshire.gov.uk or cmb.leader@staffordshire.gov.uk.

Growth Programme - For Rural Businesses

Rural businesses can apply for competitive grants from the Growth Programme. Growth Programme business development grants are available to develop a new or existing business in a rural area. Applicants can be:

  • a micro or small-sized business
  • a micro or small-sized social enterprise
  • a farmer wanting to diversify into non-agricultural activities

Growth Programme grants will normally be above £35,000. Applicants can usually apply for a grant to cover up to 40% of the project’s eligible costs. The minimum eligible cost of the project would, therefore, be £87,500. Grants will normally be to a maximum of £145,000. Occasionally, the calls for application will be for larger projects. Grants for these projects will only cover up to 20% of the eligible costs.

The following costs are eligible for funding:

  • building or improving fixed property
  • buying new equipment and machinery and
  • architects, engineer or consultant fees for the project – (as long as these don’t add up to more than 15% of the project’s total eligible costs)

The following costs are also eligible, as long as they only form part of the project being funded:

  • buying or developing a dedicated piece of computer software – but not an off-the shelf piece of business software (like Microsoft Office)
  • patents, licences, copyrights or trademarks, and
  • energy-saving and resource efficiency equipment

Before applying - Register with Rural Payments

Applicants need to register for rural payments before they can apply. If they have already registered, they won’t need to do this again.  After they register, applicants will get a Single Business Identifier (SBI), which they will need for their Growth Programme application. Applicants must still register even if they already have an SBI.  There are 2 stages to the application process - an outline application and a full application. Applications are assessed at both stages and only the highest scoring applications will be successful.

Applicants will need to fill in 2 application forms to apply for grant:

  • Stage 1: an ‘outline’ application, then if successful (Download an outline application form)
  • Stage 2: a ‘full’ application

For Further information visit - https://www.gov.uk/guidance/business-development-grants-growth-programme

Finance and Funding Support

GBSLEP - Growth Hub - Funding and Finance Portal 

The Growth Hub comprises of a web based portal which aims to engage with all types of businesses with the ambition, appetite and potential to innovate and grow. The Growth Hub - Funding and Finance Portal offers a quick way to understand what finance is available to help grow your business? The Funding and Finance portal has been is designed to simplify the process for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to raise finance by providing local businesses with the information that they need to assist them with access to finance, by clearly segmenting potential funders into areas of specialism and expertise.

Search for funding by visiting https://www.gbslepgrowthhub.co.uk/funding-finance

Better Business Finance (BFF) 

Better Business Finance provides impartial information and support to businesses and entrepreneurs looking to develop and grow; whether the business is seeking finance, or starting out or exporting abroad, BBF is here to help. It was set up by Barclays, HSBC, RBS, Lloyds and Santander.in 2011 and is managed by the British Bankers’ Association (BBA) in collaboration with its business and finance partners. BBF was created to bring to life the recommendations of the Business Finance Taskforce, which was set up by the major banks to work together to help support the UK’s small and medium-sized businesses who are vital to our economy.

Search for funding by visiting http://www.betterbusinessfinance.co.uk/

Which funding scheme(s) suits your business?

The number of funding schemes available means the information can appear overwhelming and complex to navigate through. The council's enterprise team can help with this by talking to you to find out your aspirations and requirements and signposting you to the scheme that is best suited to you.

If any of these funding programmes are of interest, or you would like to talk to someone about what funding you may be eligible for, then the enterprise team can help.

Please see the contact the enterprise team page for full details of how to get in touch.