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Government Support for New Businesses

By: Dave Howell - Updated: 5 Oct 2015 | comments*Discuss
Business Personal Finance Government

Central and local government have attempted for several years to become a champion of small businesses. As a new business owner, the government agencies that currently exist can help you to start, and then profitably run your franchise business. There is much more help available than simply financial advice. Help can include:

  • Improving your personal finance situation to enable you to gain the money you need to start your new business
  • Advise on regulations and other legislative issues that may impact on your new business
  • Support your business if it is to become an employer
  • Help your new business if it will be operating from specific regions that can attract additional funding
  • Support any business expansion plans you may have for your business in the UK and overseas

Government Grand Support

The government is keen to do all it can to support new business start-ups in the UK. A number of organisations now exist that can help you start and run your new franchise business profitably. These include:

Business Link

This is an excellent resource that all new franchise owners will want to visit regularly. If you have a business question, there should be an article to help you.

Government Grants

Grant aid is very specific about the type of business that can apply. There are three main directories you can consult for potential grants for your business: Business Link, GRANTnet and j4b Grants

If your business is developing a technology that could help reduce carbon emissions, grant aid up to £250,000 is available - details are on the Carbon Trust’s website. A selection of grants is also available from the Energy Saving Trust.

Research and Development

The development of technology is also a government priority. R&D grants could be available to help you develop an new technology that your personal finance situation can’t afford to fund. The Regional Development Agency handles all these grant applications. You can locate yours via their website: www.englandsrdas.com.

Small Firms Loan Guarantee Scheme

This scheme is aimed at new businesses that are having problems securing the finance they need to start their business. The governments solution was that instead of just offering financial advice, they would actually offer a practical solution. This resulted in the Small Firms Loan Guarantee. You can see a list of the participating lenders in the scheme on the BERR website: http://tinyurl.com/5ooqoj.

This scheme guarantees 75 per cent of the loan made to your business so that the bank doesn’t have to take the whole risk themselves. There is a cost as your business will pay an additional 2 per cent in interest on top of whatever your bank is charging for your business loan. You can borrow up to £250,000 for up to 10 years, but your franchise business must not have a turnover of more than £5.5 million pounds in any year.

Additional Help and Support

As well as the government agencies that have already been mentioned, there are other organisations that your business may find useful contacting for help, support or further information. These include:

Better Regulation Executive (BRE)

This organisation’s remit is it to simplify the legislation and regulations that all small businesses have to comply with. When you start a new business the number of regulations you need to be aware of can become a burden on your business’s time and resources. The BRE is a platform to voice your concerns.

Department for Business Enterprise & Regulatory Reform (BERR)

Formerly the DTI, the BERR is not just a source of R&D grant funding. The department has masses of information to support your new franchise business.

Companies House

If your franchise business will be set up as a company, you will have to submit your forms to Companies House. They can also help you with other business matters such as vetting any new business you want to trade with.

UK Trade and Investment

Similar in set-up to the BERR, UK Trade and Investment focuses on the nuts and bolts of operating a business in the UK and/or trading overseas.

UK Intellectual Property Office

The intellectual property that your new franchise business is based on could be its most precious asset. The IPO can help you protect that asset with patents and trademark registration.

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I am trying to set up a courier company but I am low on funds. Could you advise me on the best course of action? Thanks
Mackie - 5-Oct-15 @ 10:19 PM
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