North west firms offered £10m lifeline
The Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) has set up a £10 million support fund for small firms in the region which are struggling to get credit from banks.
NWDA’s Loan Transition Fund is aimed at improving the financing options for new and existing firms which are unable to access funds from commercial lenders.
Loans of between £3,000 and £50,000 are available to businesses of any size that can demonstrate a viable business plan. Business–owners are also required to show that a failure to secure funding would threaten either the long or short–term viability of the business.
The support fund is the latest injection of Government funding to north west businesses, following a £200 million allocation to the region in September. Minister for the North West and chair of the Joint Economic Commission for the North West, Beverley Hughes said:
“This is part of a package of measures we are putting in place to protect families and businesses. This support will be a lifeline to some of the small and medium–sized businesses whose future health is so important to the region’s economy.”
From 2009, the NWDA is planning to offer loans to businesses of up to £250,000, and a £140 million Venture Capital Loan Fund (VCLF) will be available in April 2009.
Loans are being administered by Community Development Finance Institutions (CDFI) on behalf of the NWDA. Firms interested in applying should contact their nearest CDFI member.