Monday, July 10, 2017

News: Millions more in EU funding to boost business in the SCR

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Millions of pounds in funding from the European Union is set to continue to be used to support growing businesses and inward investment in the Sheffield city region (SCR).

Calls have been released relating to using EU money to support new property for inward investors, enhance the competitiveness of small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and for business incubation projects.

Up to £12m of funding is available for projects that target the region's advanced engineering SMEs and enable them to become more competitive in supply chains and create more high quality jobs.

The call talks of the "provision of intensive and bespoke diagnostic, coaching and training within SMEs operating in the advanced manufacturing, engineering and aerospace industries and related supply chain where working with around 60 companies will look to generate £5 billion of contract value and 10,000 jobs in the sector by 2023. This project has demonstrated that there is more demand, not only from within aerospace but in other areas of advance engineering, including automotive, defence, energy and rail – all of which have a presence in the SCR."

A second call for £2m of funding is looking to support projects that incubate high growth entrepreneurs and early stage businesses such as a competitive short-term programme of bespoke acceleration support and intensive business support for entrepreneurs to get them "investor-ready."

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A further £2m call relates to the digital economy and will fund projects that identify supply chain opportunities for digitalisation, support networks and mentoring, and provide advice and support for entrepreneurship. It aims to address the issues that saw employment in the core digital economy fall by 3% in the SCR between 2010 and 2015 whereas employment in this sector grew across the UK by 11%.

£500,000 is being made available for projects which help SME's to access graduate employees. It should enhance the current RISE programme by creating additional resource and activity.

Business support in the SCR is coordinated by the European-funded Growth Hub which creates a focal point for national and local programmes. New projects should complement the work already taking place.

For inward investment, a £3.5m call has been released to support projects in South Yorkshire. The call explains that projects will: "grow the existing business base within the SCR by encouraging new firms through inward investment and to increase supply chain development and opportunities through the provision of available property to enable both inward relocation and/or growth."

Cash is being made available in the form of development gap funding to land owners/developers in order to provide premises for SMEs that are ready for occupation almost immediately.

Structural funding from the EU is seen as integral to meeting the targets in the Local Enterprise Partnership's (LEP's) Growth Plan, which has set an ambitious target of creating 70,000 new jobs in the SCR by 2023.

Chancellor Philip Hammond confirmed last year that the Government will guarantee (with certain conditions) EU funding for structural and investment fund projects, signed after the Autumn Statement and which continue after the UK has left the EU (possibly in 2019).

Over €200m in EU funding was expected to be used to support businesses, inward investment, infrastructure, innovation and social inclusion in the SCR until 2020.

SCR Growth Hub website

Images: SCR Growth Hub


1 comments:

Anonymous,  July 10, 2017 at 1:39 PM  

Let's not forget that this money is because we are in a deprived area
We were selected for funding by UK Government
We already paid the money to the EU before it was allocated.

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