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Information on loans and grants for new and established businesses and guidance on financial management can be found at Business Link.
The Business Link helpline is 0845 600 9006.
Government finance support schemes
- The Small Loans for Business Scheme provides loans of up to £50,000 to small and medium sized businesses that have viable business plans but have been refused bank finance.
- The Enterprise Finance Guarantee provides lenders with a government guarantee to loan money to businesses.
- Finance for Business offers flexible finance solutions such as loans and equity finance for businesses that have viable business plans but have been unable to get support from commercial banks and investors.
- The Grant for Business Investment (GBI) Scheme provides capital to support business investment or job creation projects. Grants begin at £10,000.
Other organisations offering financial support to businesses include:
- Co-operative and Community Finance provides loan finance to the co-operative and social enterprise sector.
- Bristol Enterprise Development Fund offers start up and expansion loans for small businesses and social enterprises needing to raise more money than banks are willing to lend. Telephone 0117 944 4700.
- The Prince's Trust offers loans of up to £5,000 to young people (18 to 30) who are unemployed or underemployed. Applicants must have a viable business idea and be unable to access funding from other sources.
Business rates relief
Any business ratepayer who occupies a single property where the rateable value (RV) is less than £18,000 (£15,000 prior to 1 April 2010) is entitled to business rate relief on a tapered basis with 50% relief on a property with a rateable value of less than £6,000.
To provide help with the running of a small business the Government will fund a temporary increase in the level of small business rate relief. Under this initiative eligible businesses occupying properties with rateable values (RV’s) up to £6,000 will not pay business rates for one year from October 2010. In addition, small business benefiting from the rate relief taper (RV’s up to £12,000) will receive significant reductions.
Further information on Business Rates Relief can be found on the Business Rates pages.