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Good news (and bad news) on grant funding

How often do we hear that micro- and small businesses are the lifeblood of the economy and the main source of new jobs? And that we need to move the economy away from an over-reliance on financial black magic and focus more on making real products? Add to that the fact that it isn’t easy for businesses to borrow money at the moment and you could be forgiven for expecting the Government to focus heavily on supporting small business. If you’re in this camp, you’re likely to be disappointed. But it’s not all bad news!

European funding for business – often overlooked

At a time when cuts are affecting UK government funding for business, European grant funding can be an excellent solution. And yet I find it is frequently overlooked because people are put off by the prospect of red tape. There’s no denying, it does take time to develop and complete an application but if you’re looking for as much as €10m, is it so much to ask for a comprehensive, well thought through proposal? Try getting that amount of money from a VC with no guarantees.

Are there still grants out there to support innovation?

With public sector cutbacks now well and truly upon us, you could be forgiven for thinking that grant money is in short supply. You’d be right; several schemes have already been put on hold pending the Government’s review of public sector spending commitments, most notably…

Finance to oil the wheels of innovation

Most tenants in the St John’s Innovation Centre learn quickly how to make slim resources go a long way. This applies particularly to funding. Yet innovation requires ongoing investment which is hard to get in the current market. In recognition of this, the Department for Business Innovation and Skills recently launched a consultation focused on ‘Financing a Private Sector Recovery’. One to watch?