New £40 Million Loan Fund Opens to Support Small Firms' Growth

The Enterprise Ventures' SME Loan Fund was launched in June 2015 and provides loans to established and growing SMEs in all sectors and across all areas of the UK, with a particular focus in the North West, Yorkshire and Humberside.

The aim of the scheme is to generate business growth. For example, a business may require additional working capital to fund expansion, cover the cost of fulfilling a new contract or buying stock. Alternatively the scheme can provide finance to acquire a new property or to improve existing premises. It can also help with an investment in new plant, machinery, a new IT system or other assets.

The programme has an overall budget of £40 million, invested by Santander and the Greater Manchester Pension Fund. Individual loans of between £150,000 and £1 million are available. Typically loans cover a period of up to five years and are tailored to the applicant's specific business requirements.

These loans can often address a funding gap where banks and other lenders are unable to provide the full requirement.

Small to medium-sized businesses (SMEs) operating in all sectors and at all stages of development in the UK may apply.

The business must have current or anticipated operating profit of £100,000 and a minimum turnover of £1 million a year.

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Pictured: Damian McGann, left, and Jonathan Diggines