£100 Million Fund Opens Today

Thu 30 Apr 20

Applications open for lifeline support schemes at 2pm

A £100 million package of additional grant support for small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) and newly self-employed people opens for applications later today.

The three separate funds will be administered by local authorities and Scotland’s enterprise agencies and will begin to pay out grants in early May.

They include a £34 million hardship fund for the newly self-employed, a £20 million fund for small and micro enterprises in the creative, tourism and hospitality sectors and £45 million for viable SMEs crucial to the Scottish economy which are vulnerable. 

Applicants can access these funds and more via the www.FindBusinessSupport.gov.scot website. All funds will be open for applications by 2pm. 

 

The funds which make up the £100 million support package are as follows:

 

£34 million Newly Self-Employed Hardship Fund | managed by Local Authorities, will be allocated to the newly self-employed who are ineligible for UK support (as they became self-employed since April 2019) but are facing hardship with £2,000 grants.

£20 million Creative, Tourism & Hospitality Enterprises Hardship Fund | managed by the Enterprise Agencies with support from Creative Scotland and VisitScotland for small and micro creative, tourism and hospitality companies not in receipt of business rates relief with grants of up to £25,000. 

£45 million Pivotal Enterprise Resilience Fund | managed by the Enterprise Agencies providing bespoke grants and wrap around business support to viable but vulnerable SMEs who are vital to the local or national economic foundations of Scotland.

The Scottish Government is also providing £1 million to top up Creative Scotland’s Bridging Bursaries in the not-for-profit sector.  

Our economy has been hit hard by this crisis and previously profitable businesses have seen demand dry up overnight. Our support will help alleviate the hardship those individuals and companies are facing.

I am particularly pleased that we will be able to help the newly self-employed who do not qualify for the UK’s scheme and are facing financial hardship as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19).

We also recognise the particular impact of COVID-19 on our creative, tourism and hospitality sectors at what would normally be their busiest period. This fund is intended to relieve the hardship of smaller firms that are ineligible for other forms of support.

As well as dealing with this immediate crisis, we must look to the future. We must ensure that viable and vital businesses in all sectors with a part to play in strengthening the resilience of Scotland’s economy survive this crisis and thrive in future, which is why £45 million is being allocated to support those firms.

We continue to engage with businesses on a regular basis to understand their needs and press the UK Government to deliver for them.

Economy Secretary, Fiona Hyslop

Open for applications at 2pm

Creative, Tourism & Hospitality Enterprises Hardship Fund  

The £20 million Creative, Tourism & Hospitality Enterprises Hardship Fund for small creative, tourism and hospitality companies not in receipt of other COVID-19 business rates relief and related grant support.

Eligible businesses can apply online through the FindBusinessSupport website from 2pm and successful applicants can anticipate receiving funds within 10 working days from the receipt of completed applications.

The fund aims to support companies in tourism, creative industries and hospitality that are experiencing hardship, because they are ineligible for other COVID-19 Government grant support.

The focus is to help companies manage cashflow commitment for the next three months, and those furloughing staff are still eligible to apply. 

Essential eligibility criteria:  

  • Companies up to 49 employees 
  • Experienced at least a 50% loss of current or projected revenue 
  • Not in financial difficulty pre 31 December 2019 
  • Companies can-not be in receipt of other COVID-19 government grant support, except Furlough Scheme 
  • Not for pre-revenue companies 
  • Must have a business bank account 

 

Pivotal Enterprise Resilience Fund  

The £45 million Pivotal Enterprise Resilience Fund for viable but vulnerable SME firms who are vital to Scotland’s economy.

Eligible businesses can apply online through the FindBusinessSupport website from 2pm and successful applicants can anticipate receiving funds within 10 working days from the receipt of completed applications.

The fund aims to support companies with working capital to help them continue trading or to come out of hibernation and the focus is on firms that are vital to local, regional or national economic prosperity and those who can help to kick start the recovery.

Essential eligibility criteria: 

  • Companies with up to 249 employees that have been trading successfully prior to Covid-19    
  • Less than €50m turnover or balance sheet total of €43m. 
  • Can demonstrate the funding will support the business to be viable  
  • Not in financial difficulty before 31 December 2019 
  • Must have business bank account 

In addition, the Scottish Government has made available a new £34 million Newly Self-Employed Hardship Fund for newly self-employed facing hardship through £2,000 grants.

Information and links to Local Authority online applications forms will be available through the FindBusinessSupport website from 2pm and applicants can anticipate receiving funds within 10 working days from the receipt of completed applications.

Read the full Scottish Government release.

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