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Growth Company Development Fund – Guidance

Member News 12th February 2019

The discretionary Fund provides financial assistance to help businesses meet specific business growth objectives. It can support capital expenditure (including IT), property expansion/improvements, exhibiting at a national trade show or the costs of developing innovative products or processes. The fund can provide up to 50% of eligible costs, up to a maximum contribution of £5,000.

• The purchase of furniture and consumables
• Routine property maintenance
• Development and marketing of information websites/brochure websites which lack a clear focus on e-commerce development
• Purchase and installation of off-the-shelf software packages (eg. Microsoft Office software, standard Sage packages etc)
• Purchases made via hire purchase, lease or other finance agreement

The Fund aims to support business growth by helping the business implement projects which increase turnover and increase or safeguard employment, through improvements in productivity, competitiveness or innovation.

This grant is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund, funding for the development of a business e-commerce website must be acknowledged by using the appropriate European logo which must be displayed on the business website.

The project must NOT commence before approval is given as the grant cannot be awarded retrospectively. All payments for approved expenditure must be made through the business bank account and supported by invoices from suppliers. The grant is paid after the payments have been made.

The Fund is open to sole traders, partnerships, limited liability partnerships and limited companies that:
• operate from commercial premises within the Renfrewshire Council area, for which there is a signed lease/rental /licence agreement in place , and
• are working with a Business Gateway Adviser, and
• have a business bank account, and
• are small or medium sized – employing fewer than 250, an annual turnover of less than €50m or balance sheet assets of less than the €43m, and no more than 25% of share capital owned by a large company/public body

The Fund is not open to:
• Retail businesses (unless serving a niche market which will not adversely affect other retailers in the area)
• Pubs, clubs, restaurants and other licensed trades (certain Tourism businesses may be eligible)
• Professional / personal services
• Businesses in the following sectors; the sex industry, politics, religion, nude or semi nude modelling or photography, gambling, multi-level marketing/pyramid selling.
• Community groups, not for profit organisations, voluntary or charitable organisations (except social enterprises).

Priority will be given to businesses involved in Tourism, Construction, Manufacturing, the Service Sector which support manufacturing, Life Sciences, Creative Industries, Digital and Emerging Technologies.

Businesses may not apply for further funding through the programme within 24 months of any offer being made.

Application Procedure
Applications will only be considered from full-time business.

A completed Application Form should be submitted, (explaining why external financial assistance from Renfrewshire Council is necessary to enable the project to proceed) together with an up to date business plan and at least two years financial forecasts (profit & loss, balance sheet and cash flow) to demonstrate the growth potential. Most recent annual accounts (if applicable) and up to date management accounts will also be required. If a full business plan is not available, a mini business plan consisting of a one page summary of the company setting out its plans for the future is sufficient.

Upon receipt of an application a Council officer will contact the applicant to arrange a meeting to appraise the application. A decision will be made shortly after this meeting and, if successful, a formal offer of grant will be made.

Terms and Conditions
Specific terms and conditions will be detailed in a formal offer.

Further Information
For further information please contact:
Economic Development, Chief Executive’s Service,
Renfrewshire Council
Renfrewshire House, Cotton Street, Paisley PA1 1WB,
0141 618 7861/4


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