Monday 21st July 2014
Small businesses in Derbyshire are being helped to develop and grow with grants of up to £75,000 - and there's still time for local firms to bid for cash.
Derbyshire Economic Partnership - backed by Derbyshire County Council - secured £3m for small businesses from the Government's Regional Growth Fund.
Businesses around the county are already benefitting with around £0.5 million already awarded to 25 businesses through the Global Derbyshire Small Business Support Programme.
The programme, which was set up to distribute the funding, aims to create at least 200 new jobs, safeguard at least 48 more and attract £4m of private sector investment into the county.
Now the bidding process has been simplified to encourage more small businesses to bid for a share to help boost the local economy and generate jobs.
Businesses could be eligible for a grant of between £4,000 and £75,000 if it leads to the employment of at least one extra person.
Grants are available to:
- Help set up a new business
- Buy plant, equipment or machinery
- Fund staff training and development
- Pay for website development
- Set-up online trading
- Develop a new product or service
- Employ external specialist support
- Refurbish offices
- Fund a broadband connection for your business
- Buy equipment to help your business export goods.
- Help prepare firms to export or buy equipment to allow them
to trade overseas.
Councillor Joan Dixon, Derbyshire County Council Cabinet Member for Jobs, Economy and Transport, (left), said: "If your business could benefit from a grant of up to £75,000, we want to hear from you.
"In challenging economic times, we understand small business may think twice about committing the necessary investment to grow. The match funding available through this project might just give them the helping hand required to take the next step towards job creation.
"Small businesses are at the heart of the Derbyshire economy and we’re committed to doing all we can to support them to flourish and compete in a global market. Our team of experts are on hand to advise so please get in touch to see how a Global Derbyshire grant might be able to help your business.”
Businesses already awarded funding from the programme are seeking to create 80 jobs from their grant projects.
Richard Horsley, Chairman of the Derbyshire Economic Partnership, said: “The aim of Derbyshire Economic Partnership is to champion the needs of business, promote growth across our great county and ensure all the key movers and shakers in Derbyshire are focused on delivering jobs and prosperity. Global Derbyshire demonstrates our commitment to this aim but the funding is time limited. I would urge all businesses with eligible projects to contact us.”
Businesses need to apply for funding by November 2014 and any projects awarded funding need to be complete by 31 March 2015.
Anyone who thinks their business could be eligible for a grant can visit www.derbyshireeconomicpartnership.org.uk or contact Derbyshire County Council by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, calling 01629 539325 or 01629 538245 or visiting www.derbyshire.gov.uk/globalderbyshire
Two small businesses which have already been awarded Global Derbyshire grants are Intrepid Brewery in Brough near Hathersage and R.A Labone and Co Ltd in Ilkeston (see case studies below).
CASE STUDY 1
Hope Valley's first microbrewery has been set-up thanks to funding from the Global Derbyshire small business support programme.
(l-r) Intrepid's Sales Negotiator Paul Towers, marketing manager Rebecca McIntyre and head brewer Ben McIntyre.
Intrepid Brewery based at Vincent Works, Brough has received a grant of £10,000 which has enabled it to purchase two fermenters and a cask washer.
The money has allowed head brewer Ben McIntyre from Bamford to turn his hobby into a dream business with his wife Rebecca, who will do the company's marketing.
The idea to start the company came after the company's sales negotiator, Paul Towers, gave Ben a book on how to set up a microbrewery company for his birthday.
Rebecca, who will continue in her job as a freelance bid writer until the business becomes successful enough to go full-time, said: "It would not have been possible to set up the company without Global Derbyshire and the money has made a big difference to what we want to achieve.
"The help and support from the team was very useful and it is straightforward to apply if you have a clear idea of what it is you want to do."
Ben added: "The funding has helped us to get up and running and without it, we wouldn't have been able to get going, as it helps us to prove the business to get other funding and expand."
Intrepid currently has three beers which are ready to market, with a lot more ideas for new ales.
They are Explorer, a blonde beer with fruity aromas, St. Bernard, an oaked brown ale balanced by caramel and biscuit flavours and Porter, a dark ale described as rich, full bodied with a bitter finish.
Paul said: "The aim is to get them into as many pubs as possible.
"The reason I got involved was because Ben makes the best beer I have ever tasted and I know I can sell something I have 100% faith in."
The company plan to showcase their beer at Bamford's first Beer and Sausage Festival at the Anglers Rest on August 25th, before fully opening in mid-September.
For more information about Intrepid Brewery, visit www.intrepidbrew.co.uk
CASE STUDY 2
Ilkeston-based engineering firm R.A Labone and Co Ltd has two reasons to celebrate this year.
For as well as being in business for half a century the company has landed a major new contract with the help of a Global Derbyshire Small Business Support Programme.
The family business, which makes components for use in car manufacturing and for the medical device market, bid for a Global Derbyshire grant of £75,000 to help produce a new product crucial to the continued growth of the company.
And when the bid was successful, it gave the firm the extra financial backing needed to buy and install a dedicated rotary injection moulding machine and associated manufacturing cell to start producing components for tyre pressure monitoring systems that will soon be fitted to all car tyres.
Now the company, based on Lower Middleton Street, expects to recruit up to six extra staff to produce around four million parts every year.
Max Pulford, Business Development Manager at R.A Labone and Co Ltd, (pictured above), said : "The grant from Global Derbyshire was a key driver in getting this contract up and running.
"The company is making a huge financial commitment to get the project off the ground and that brings a high degree of risk but the grant helped to soften the blow. It gives the company the confidence to take that step forward and it gives the banks confidence in lending us the extra finance needed for the project."
Max said he would encourage other local businesses to apply for a Global Derbyshire grant.
He added: "We're all operating in challenging times, so anything which can help a business develop has got to be welcomed."
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