Steve Rotheram, Mayor of Liverpool City Region, has announced a new £ 2.24 million high-growth innovation fund to help dozens of small and medium-sized businesses grow and create jobs.
Funded by the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority and the European Regional Development Fund, grants of between £ 25,000 and £ 75,000 will be available for high growth businesses and those with high growth potential.
The £ 2.24 million fund is intended to support existing businesses in the Liverpool City region to bring new products or services to market or develop new processes to help them adapt and grow, contributing to the region’s post-pandemic economic recovery .
The High Growth Innovation Fund is based on two pilot cycles of the Future Innovation Fund which saw 35 local companies receive support worth £ 2.1 million. It will contribute to Mayor Rotheram’s ambition to invest 5% of the regional GVA in research and development (R&D) by 2030, nearly double the government’s target in the UK.
“SMEs are the lifeblood of the Liverpool City Region economy, accounting for 99% of all businesses in our region,” said Rotheram.
“The role they must play in helping guide our recovery from the pandemic cannot be underestimated. We need smart and bold businesses in our region with the potential – and ambition – to expand and innovate.
“I want to help even more companies on their growth paths. This new funding round will encourage local entrepreneurs to tap into their entrepreneurial spirit. The return on this investment will be huge for our economy, helping to create thousands of new, high-paying and secure jobs, all while supporting our broader goals for innovation.
“This is just one of the many ways our city region is leading the way in helping local businesses succeed. I look forward to seeing the impact of this latest funding and the opportunities it will unlock for SMEs across the region. “
Councilor Jan Williamson, holder of the portfolio of the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority for Inclusive Economy and the Third Sector, said: c “We know how important our small and medium-sized enterprises are to our economy: they provide the Most of the employment in our city region and we need this sector for high-growth companies to exploit their full potential, creating good quality jobs and boosting our economy.
“This investment will do exactly that, supporting our high-performing SMEs to ensure they can play a full role in our economic recovery as we seek to rebuild after the pandemic.”
Asif Hamid, MBE, president of Liverpool City Region LEP and portfolio lead for Business Support for the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority, said, “The launch of this fund is great news. Over the past two years we have seen stories across the city region about how companies have innovated and adapted in the face of the pandemic and it is essential to ensure these activities are fully supported.
“The High Growth Innovation Fund is one of them and is designed to help innovative and ambitious businesses sustain and grow, ultimately creating the opportunities that will help drive our region’s economy.
“We know these ambitious businesses will become the main driving force of our city region in the coming months and years and I would encourage any company to get in touch with Growth Platform – Liverpool City Region Growth Company who are providing this fund and who have developed a full range of support programs and services to accelerate and support growth “.
The High Growth Innovation Fund is part of a new £ 6.6 million High Growth LCR program, which will provide a range of business support tailored to high growth SMEs, complementing the £ 75 million venture launched by Mayor Rotheram in September 2019, the largest of its kind in the decades it was first announced.
The fund, which will be provided by Growth Platform, the growth company of the Liverpool City Region, is open to projects from any sector, specialty or technology (except those specifically excluded by the eligibility criteria). Applicants must have 50% funding, must not use the funding to pay existing salaries, and should aim to demonstrate impact within six months of receiving a grant.
The proposals must also align with at least one of the six strategic priority areas of the city-region (as outlined in its draft Local Industrial Strategy), namely: Open health innovation; Sustainable industrial future; Global Cultural Capital; Zero carbon economy; Technology for good; and digitization.
Applications for the new High Growth Innovation Fund are now open and will close at 5pm on Friday 20 May. For more details on how to apply, including eligibility criteria, please visit this link.
High Growth Innovation Fund for the Liverpool City Region
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