On top of the questions of eligibility, your own private match funding, and job creation, the application process is designed to test whether you have a viable and sustainable business proposition, and that the grant brings added value.
You will need to show that:
- You have a good business plan and/or investment plan
- The skills to put that plan into operation
- You have the private funding to invest, which together with the grant, will make it happen
- You will create new job/s and offer good value in relation to the grant applied for
- The grant is essential to making the investment and jobs happen
This must project at least two years business activity.
For an existing business, we will need to see the business plan for the whole firm, and a separate plan for the investment project.
For a new business, the business plan and the investment plan will normally be the same thing.
The business/investment plan should cover the following:
- Your product or service
- Your market and how you reach it (publicity, sales, distribution)
- Your suppliers
- Legal issues – company status and any regulations
- People and skills – management, staff, roles, training and development, recruitment
- Location and premises
- Finance, starting capital, budgets, cashflow, profit-and-loss, balance sheet projections
- Delivery plan – what has to be done, when, and by whom (roles and responsibilities)
- Risk – what are the risks, how likely, what impacts, and mitigation measures.
- Sensitivity – what will be the financial impact of (for example) high costs, or lower sales. What is the break-even point?
This doesn’t need to be in one single document. You will be asked to upload this (total max 5Mb).
The level of detail in the business/investment plan can be proportional to the size of grant applied for.
Private sector funding
You will have to show that all your match funding is available for your use, by providing a bank statement or similar. The source can be from your own funds, loans, shares/equity or similar. This must be cash in hand, or in some cases goods of specific value. Promises and letters of commitment from shareholders or lenders are unlikely to be accepted.
You will have create at least one part-time new job. The larger the grant you request, the more jobs are expected. For guidance, £7,000 SUCCESS grant for one new job would be seen as acceptable value for money.
Only the first new job has to be started before the grant is released – others may arise from predicted growth over the next 2-3 years. Your business plan must clearly show how your jobs forecast will be achieved and paid for from increased business income.
Public money should not be used to subsidise investment that would occur anyway. So you must demonstrate that a SUCCESS grant is essential to the investment and job creation. This means you must show that without this support, the investment and growth would not take place, or would be smaller or delayed.
Click here for our guidance document which you can download and save.