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What Government Grants Can You Get?

By: Kevin Watson MSc - Updated: 14 Oct 2014 | comments*Discuss
Business Finance Businesss Grants

There are various government grants available for entrepreneurs. These sources of finance can help an enterprise become established, and assist with development costs. They can also provide much-needed encouragement to a struggling small business.

The Grant for Business Investment

The Grant for Business Investment scheme provides money to obtain equipment, rent or buy premises, promote the creation of new jobs, and maintain existing employment.

The scheme comes under the government’s Solutions for Business initiative. Any grants the government decides to award must help a business expand, and become modernised and more efficient. An entrepreneur who applies for a grant must give details of the project’s size, the proposed increase in productivity, and the skills of the current and anticipated employees.

Sums available start at £10,000, and there is no upper limit.

In Scotland and Northern Ireland, these business grants have alternative names: the Grant for Regional Selective Assistance, and the Enterprise NI Loan Fund respectively.

The Government Grant for Research and DevelopmentThe purpose of the Government Grant for Research and Development (GGRD) is to finance the creation of technologically innovative products and processes. An individual, a small business, or a medium-sized business can apply.

Although the grant is restricted to England where the Regional Development Agencies administer the scheme, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales each have their own versions.

In England, there are four different business grants available under the auspices of the GGRD. Each refers to a certain type of business project: micro, research, development, exceptional development.

Micro projects last for a maximum of a year. A small business with fewer than ten staff can request up to £20,000.

Research projects last from six to eighteen months. They examine the commercial prospects of new technology. A business with fewer than 50 staff can apply for up to £100,000.

Development projects last from six to thirty six months. They involve the development of products or process prototypes associated with innovative technology. A business with fewer than 250 staff can ask for up to £250,000.

Exceptional development projects also last from six to thirty six months. They relate to technological developments that are vital for a specific industry’s future. There is no restriction on the number of employees a business may have. The grant is up to £500,000.

With all four of these government grants, entrepreneurs must be prepared to use some of their own money.

Train to Gain

Train to Gain provides training advice about every aspect of commerce and management, and can help a company obtain Investors in People status. An entrepreneur with any size of business can apply.

The scheme works in two ways. A training broker can visit an entrepreneur’s business, and conduct a skills assessment. The broker then recommends a training package; local approved trainers; and funding options that support an entrepreneur’s own financial commitment.

Alternatively, an entrepreneur can contact a local college or trainer direct and request assistance through a Train to Gain arrangement.

Other Funding Sources

Other sources for business grants include both domestic and European initiatives.

  • The Department of Health funds research and development projects that improve medical knowledge.
  • The National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts has a range of grants to encourage projects for new products, services, and processes.
  • The European Commission’s Framework Programme offers support to UK companies who would like to work on research and development projects with European partners.
  • The European Union’s eContent scheme gives finance to help the expansion of the European digital content sector.

Necessary Support

Entrepreneurs require as much backing as possible. Government grants won’t fund a business start-up, but they can provide the financial boost to help a new or existing venture achieve success.

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@Mary - apprenticefunding.com link hereshould be able to help you and give you guidance about setting up an AFA centre. It will give you examples of success stories and how to set up as an accredited training provider. Good luck with your search.
BusinessAndEntrepreneurs - 15-Oct-14 @ 12:36 PM
I have been running my own unique hair and beauty business successfully for 7 years. I would like now to expand and add take a bigger building and add a training college. I would like to know if I was entitled to any government funding to help me set up the college? If so who do I need to approach.
Mary - 14-Oct-14 @ 10:14 PM
i would like to start up my business but i cannot secure any grants. can anyone help. i need £20 thousand to purchase equipment and materials.
Nipper - 13-Oct-13 @ 9:39 PM
I would like to open my own business and ime a loan parent on benefits I have managed a shop and did very well for my boss I tripled her profit in the first week I would like to open my own sandwich shop and take on catering contract do delivery'suntil I have enough money for a second venture that is an idia I don't think any one has thought of yet and I have ran it past a few people who have been successful and they think it is a great idia I am not shore weather to say or not as I have had an idia taken in the past and lost out on a lot of money
sez - 3-Oct-13 @ 4:39 PM
I'm thinking of setting up my own Security Company and going as a sole trader is there a grant or any help that i can get to help me se5t the company off any help or advise would be very great fully appreciated
Gloyt - 10-Apr-13 @ 5:25 PM
I am starting a new company, we have developed a rapid prototype with all of our fund's. we now need to apply for a patent for our protection, we have talked to our bank to loan some money for the cost of the patent, but they are not interested in helping. are there any funds available for us to use so we can apply for our patent, once we have our patent protection in place we can then talk to our third party for equity backing, our product will produce employment growth in our area, and add growth to the UK economy
gaz - 12-May-12 @ 5:04 PM
I am a serious and passionate social entrepreneur and am looking to develop a support service across Chelmsford. I am seeking the components of a service that provides service to the distribution of emergency supplies across the town to persons who cannot get to the center that is being developed independantly. This service would consist of a suitable vehicle.I am looking to deliver a 'free at the point of reception' service to the elder customer/client and this would,if they required it include the provision of a 'routine foot care' service.I have over £5,000 worth of equipment and a full qualification and am prepared to invest my time and energy into this two pronged project. I feel it would have the potential to have usefull spin offs in the future.I need no more than £10,000 to kick start this enterprise.
jimbo - 29-Mar-12 @ 10:00 PM
Our business needs a new van can we get a grant, if we had 2 vans we could take on new staff
Silverfox - 28-Mar-12 @ 7:06 PM
Is there a grant to help a new business upgrade their premises. I have a new yard with a unit that has a basic office. The small kitchen and toilet facilities desperately need upgrading/replacing and at present there is no gas supply within the boundaries of the property, The electrical elements need a total overhall. My business funds are going on the rent of the land, council rates and stock/assets. The facilites can be used but are substandard.
girlscaff - 3-Oct-11 @ 12:00 PM
I am just going self employed as a builder, can I get a grant to buy tools to set myself up?
Nat - 24-Aug-11 @ 7:15 PM
I am in the process of setting up my own business and have heard about a possible grant of £1,500.00 being available. This would certainly assist me in the purchase of stock and would therefore appreciate further information.
Finlay - 5-Apr-11 @ 11:06 AM
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