A new package of support for Renfrewshire businesses to tackle the immediate impact of Coronavirus is now open for applications.
The £1.3million Renfrewshire Coronavirus Business Support Fund offers local businesses, including people self-employed, the opportunity to apply for:
- An interest free Business Restart Loan between £1,000 to £5,000 repayable up to three years to assist with short-term cashflow
- A 50% match-funded Business Resilience Grant from £1,000 to £10,000 to help businesses meet changed objectives and plan for growth
- A Business Adaptation Grant providing match-funding from £1,000 to £2500 for businesses adapting their premises to meet physical distancing requirements, open for retrospective applications.
Details of each fund, eligibility information and the online application is available now at Renfrewshire Council’s business support page.
Applicants will also receive a call from one of the Council’s Business Gateway advisers to discuss their application and provide tailored advice to meet their specific needs.
This fund has been created following detailed discussion with 500 local companies to determine what they feel can make the biggest difference in the short-term.
Renfrewshire Council Leader Iain Nicolson said: “I am acutely aware from regular dialogue with our business community throughout the pandemic of the economic harm Coronavirus is causing in Renfrewshire and we know we must be ready to help tackle this now, and in the months ahead.
“We have awarded more than 2600 government grants totalling £27.5million to help local businesses address the immediate impact and have now established this fund, listening to what businesses tell us will help them most.
“I recognise we are on a long and difficult journey, but we have a strong local economy and a business community that supports one another. We also have an excellent track record of tackling unemployment and helping people find work and together with immediate assistance, we are working with business, enterprise and education partners locally to prepare Renfrewshire’s long-term roadmap to recovery.”
The Council is also offering barriers for cafes using outdoor spaces and Business PPE packs to local businesses, having secured funding from the Scottish Government’s Towns and Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) Resilience and Recovery Fund, which is run by Scotland’s Towns Partnerships.
Businesses may also benefit from up to two days of fully funded consultancy support from experts across a range of topics including: finance, IT, Legal, Property and HR. The team can be contacted on 0141 530 2406 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Business adviser Robert Kinniburgh said: “We know how stressful a time this is for Renfrewshire businesses and are here to help however we can. It might be you want to discuss your business plan or need assistance with moving into the digital market. Whatever support is needed, I would encourage people to call us and also look out for the different webinars being run regularly on different specialist subjects.”
Bob Grant, Chief Executive of Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce said: “We warmly welcome the additional support package which offers targeted support to those companies that need it most. Based on feedback drawn from a survey of over 500 companies this new funding is a positive step to support our business community.”
Hisashi Kuboyama, Federation of Small Businesses’ Development Manager for Renfrewshire, said: “With small businesses in Renfrewshire going through extremely challenging times, we need to do absolutely everything we can to help them stay open and protect and create jobs. Many local FSB members told us that access to finance has been one of the problems, so we welcome the Renfrewshire Coronavirus Business Support Fund and urge our members and the wider small business community to have a look and see how it can help them.”
Mark Newlands, Head of Partnerships at Scottish Enterprise, said: “We know the economic impact of COVID-19 on businesses is severe. This additional tailored funding from Renfrewshire Council will be welcomed by local businesses as they face continuing economic uncertainty. Working with our partners, we’ll continue to do all we can to support companies through this time of unprecedented challenge and play our part in resetting, restarting and recovering the country’s economy.”