Businesses in North East missing out on crucial grants
Businesses and social enterprises could be missing out on up to £10,000 in grant funding to accelerate innovation in their business.
With deadlines looming for applications for the North of Tyne Innovation Recovery Grant businesses are being urged to take advantage of grants available across Newcastle upon Tyne, Northumberland and North Tyneside.
Contributing 50 per cent of eligible business spend towards Innovation Projects totalling between £10,000 and £20,000 (excluding VAT), the Innovation Recovery Grant can help businesses adopt innovative practices, or bring new products or services to the market, and it’s open to a wide range of industry sectors in the region. Grants of between £5,000 and £10,000 are available.
We could make a difference
Councillor Carl Johnson, Cabinet Member for Investment and Resources at North of Tyne Combined Authority, said: “Delivered through our Recovery Innovation Fund, the North of Tyne Innovation Recovery Grant is a critical piece of funding for businesses which have weathered the last 18 months with resilience but are now looking to future sustainability. We know many businesses across the North of Tyne area have adapted in response to Covid safety measures, and this has opened the door for them to incorporate more innovative and productive ways of working, which could ultimately lead to growth.”
Simon Green, chair of Innovation SuperNetwork, says: “The difference between invention and innovation is doing something with it and making a difference. It’s really just about solving problems and creating value in new ways, which can be done in any business of any size in any sector.
“If you’re solving a problem in the business that is attracting a cost or bringing a new product to market, you may find that you could attract a grant of up to 50 per cent of the project cost dependent on project size.”
Follow the advice
John King, North East Business Support Manager from the Grant Fund Manager, NBSL has crucial advice to anyone looking at grants to help build their business in 2022.
“We are urging anyone considering investment over the next 6 weeks to get in touch as we could make a real difference in their business. We’ve already been able to support businesses who are bringing new products and services to the market, as well as providing grants to help adopt digital solutions along with equipment purchases that have helped either improve production efficiencies or operational effectiveness.”
One of the key points of eligibility is the nature of the project that needs funding – in context of the North of Tyne Innovation Recovery Grant – it’s innovation. The project needs to be something that the business or enterprise has never done before whether through improving efficiencies or growth.
“It’s important you start any funding application by creating a plan on how you intend to grow the business. Think about what and where are your markets, what are your overheads and costs and how do you intend to cover them.
“Lots of businesses miss out on funding opportunities as they don’t think their growth plans or projects are appropriate, innovative or think they don’t have the time, but if you follow four key steps we can help simplify the process and support your business to succeed” said John.
Identify a specific project to be funded
Have a clear plan for what you are wanting help with, how long it will take to complete and how much it is going to cost. Identify how the project is helping the business and changing the organisation for the better.
Identify why you need grant funding
Grant funding aims to de-risk the decision to invest. The idea being that it encourages more businesses to take the plunge and push forward with growth plans. Explore the options out there and think clearly about the positive impact it could have on your business in terms of job creation, increased turnover, and future growth.
Identify the steps you need to take and when to take them
The process relating to the North of Tyne Innovation Recovery grant is a simple downloadable application. Take time to think about and answer ALL the questions on the application form. Don’t forget to ask questions – especially if you don’t understand anything and keep to application deadlines.
Ensure you keep your project on track – to keep your funding intact!
Allow plenty of time to apply before you want to start your project. The larger the grant you are seeking, the longer it is likely to take to get a decision. Do not start any work or pay anyone until you have signed a contract for your project. Just because you have received a contract or confirmation of funding, if you don’t complete the project in an agreed timeframe – you could compromise your funding offer. If for any reason there is a delay in getting the work done and you are not going to complete within the timescales in your contract, contact your grant body to discuss any potential extension that they could offer.
To find out more about how to get 50% of grant funding towards innovative projects totalling £10,000 – £20,000 click here.