A new grant fund for local businesses launched today and aims to give away £2m in cash to those who have workable ideas on how to create jobs.
Established, new and even yet-to-be-launched businesses can apply for money from the new grant fund for business ‘Bridging the Gap’. The fund, run by the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership, the University of Portsmouth and The News, is supported by the government’s Regional Growth Fund.
‘Bridging the Gap’ has £950,000 available for start-up companies and £950,000 for established small and medium sized businesses with fewer than 250 employees. To qualify, the businesses must be based in Portsmouth, Gosport or Havant.
Vice-Chancellor of the University of Portsmouth, Professor John Craven, said: “I am delighted the University is able to support of the Regional Growth Fund and fully endorse its focus on accelerating and supporting business job creation in the area.”
Most applicants are likely to receive between £5,000-£50,000 which they don’t have to pay back, but which has to be used to create or safeguard jobs.
Businesses also have to match-fund grants, with start ups providing 30 per cent of the project costs and established SMEs asked to provide 50 per cent of the project costs.
Additional help with match-funding might be available for creative industries businesses and University of Portsmouth students through the enterprise loan scheme managed by Parity Trust.
Anyone with a bright idea for how to create jobs and boost business is invited to first express an interest. More information on how to start the process will be available at: http://www.solentlep.org.uk/uploads/documents/Bridging_the_Gap_-_Bidding_Guidance.pdf
The Bridging the Gap board will then decide which applicants to invite to submit a full application.
The University of Portsmouth will provide help for people in submitting applications at this stage through Purple Door.
A workshop is being held on July 6 to advise businesses on the application process. Details of how to register are available by visiitng this link: http://www.port.ac.uk/business/news/title,157159,en.html