A new £20 million support programme has recently been announced to help boost the recovery of small businesses in the UK. With this new fund, the Government aims to help smaller businesses recover more quickly from the effects of the pandemic.
It means that small to medium-sized businesses in England can access a grant between £1,000 and £5,000 which can be used to purchase new equipment or upgrade technology. There is no obligation for the business to contribute as this scheme will be fully funded by the Government.
Simon Clarke, MP for Regional Growth and Local Government said, “We have always said that we would stand behind our businesses and communities as we rebuild following the coronavirus pandemic. This new funding does exactly that. Businesses will be able to use these new grants to pay for the expertise, equipment and technology they need to adapt, recover and rebuild.”
This comes on top of the £2 billion Kickstart Scheme and the £1.6 billion invested in employment supports schemes and training. The Government has also pledged a further £10 million package to help support businesses operating in the tourism industry.
What can you spend the small business grant on?
This business grant can be used in one of two ways. You can use it to purchase equipment “to adapt or adopt new technology in order to continue to deliver business activity or diversify”, according to this document from the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government.
The other way this grant can be used is to “help businesses access specialist professional advice”. Getting specialist advice and help from financial service providers can be a lifeline for many businesses struggling through the pandemic. In this case, the grant can be used in the following areas:
- Financial services
- IT and digital
- Human resources
The need for financial help in times of crisis
As we are in a time of uncertainty, having access to good financial help is vital. Whether you are a new business or have a few years of experience in your industry, hiring an accountant is one of the best moves you can make. Accountants can help you with a number of different things, from managing tax to keeping on top of invoices and customer payments.
For example, a recent article from BrooksCity highlights the problem many small businesses are facing with late payments at the moment. An accountant will help you manage unpaid invoices that are starting to build up and a rigid payment structure to reduce or limit the effects of late payments.
How do you apply for the support grant?
The £20 million support grant will be administered by the Government’s regional growth hubs. To apply for a grant, you will need to check the list of growth hubs to find the right one to apply to. On this website, you will need to click on the nearest growth hub to you which will redirect you to the relevant website where you can fill in an application form.
The amount of money you can receive will depend on personal and local circumstances but will typically be up to £3,000. Up to £5,000 may be awarded on a case-by-case basis.