We recently wrote a post (read it here) about the government scheme for helping small business with strategic advice that will help them to grow their business. Getting the right strategic advice at the right time is critical for business growth and Lord Young, the Prime Minister’s advisor on enterprise is quoted as saying
“External, strategic advice is key to commercial success and has helped thousands of businesses to grow. I want to make it easier and more affordable for small businesses to access and the Growth Vouchers programme is doing exactly this. I have received fantastic feedback from small business owners who have taken up this great offer, using the online marketplace to select a strategic advisor to help them shape their business growth and improve performance.”
The good news is that from today, 26th August, the government has expanded the growth voucher scheme to include larger businesses.
The categories of strategic advice that qualify for the scheme remain unchanged but there are some significant changes in the qualification criteria which makes the scheme attractive to the larger end of the small business spectrum. There are also changes in the way the funding is paid.
The new key criteria your business must meet to be eligible to apply is as follows:
Your business must:
- have 249 employees or less (including any employees of companies that own a stake in your business)
- be registered in England
- be able to demonstrate that the business is actively sell goods or services
- be independent (i.e. no more than 25% is owned by other businesses or organisations)
- have a turnover of less than €50 million (Euros)
- must not have applied for a Growth Voucher before
In addition Growth Vouchers cannot be used alongside any other forms of public funding (i.e. European Regional Development Funds)
If you do go on to apply there are a few additional bits of information you’ll need in preparation, the details of which can be found here.
For full information on the scheme, including advice documents, terms and conditions and application forms visit the government site here.
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