More businesses can benefit from changes to funding access

Changes have been made to a fund to open it up to more businesses.

Cath and Matthew Stephenson, the owners of Sweetdreams Ltd who have accessed funding from the North of Tyne Growth Fund.
Cath and Matthew Stephenson, the owners of Sweetdreams Ltd who have accessed funding from the North of Tyne Growth Fund.

The North of Tyne Growth Fund, part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and supported by the North of Tyne Combined Authority (NTCA), has reduced its eligibility criteria so more businesses can access the £4.6m investment programme.

The Fund, launched in 2020, is now open to small and medium-sized businesses based in the North of Tyne area – Northumberland, North Tyneside and Newcastle – that are planning capital expenditure of at least £67,000.

The Fund, managed by UMi, helps businesses foster more innovation by providing capital funding to expand their existing operations or establish new ones.

Ten businesses have already benefited, including confectioners Sweetdreams Ltd, construction company Merit Holdings, and engineering consultancy Transmission Dynamics.

Jarek Rosinski, of Transmission Dynamics in Cramlington, said: "Our North of Tyne Growth Fund adviser really believed in our case, taking a genuine interest in our business.

"We were able to make a strong case for exceptional circumstances to apply for double the normal maximum grant of £250,000."

Cramlington-based Sweetdreams Ltd's Matthew Stephenson said: "I mistakenly thought there was a real dearth of business funding and support but the North of Tyne Growth Fund changed my thinking on this and showed the depth of support out there."

Matthew McGrady, of Merit Holdings, also in Cramlington, added: "The team were flexible in structuring the grant in a way that works for us, and I certainly felt that the process was all about trying to help and advise us to get the best value out of it."

Nicki Clark, Chief Executive of UMi, said: "We, as fund managers, have worked with partners in the combined authority to ensure that the fund is meeting the needs of businesses in the area, and importantly is able to change and adapt to address challenges and opportunities as they exist right now.

"Together we are making it even easier for more businesses to access the right funding to help them do more go further."

North of Tyne Mayor, Jamie Driscoll, added: “Small businesses are the life blood of our local economy.

“At the North of Tyne, we’re investing to help those businesses grow and to innovate for the future.”

For more call 0191 716 1007 or email [email protected]