What types of loans are available for growing businesses?

Now that banks are offering simple lending processes, securing funding has become a smooth process. Banks can not only match your loan requirements to your business plans, but they will allow you to select the monthly repayment terms, choose a repayment option, and borrow between £1,000 and £25,000. You’ll find all the options on any bank’s website, with details of all their financial options including a business overdraft and business credit cards, too.

Alternatively, there are government-funded schemes available to SMEs which come with a multitude of benefits, like the Start-Up Loans service. Not only does it offer funding in the form of loans, but it also offers mentoring for entrepreneurs. The scheme assigns a partner to each company who will help develop and initiate a structured business plan. You’ll receive a low-cost, unsecured loan, backed by a range of business support products if your plan is approved.

There are some key types of loan available through government funding:

1. Soft loan

This particular type of loan includes a generous repayment plan; interest rate are usually lower, and the repayment terms can be extended for a longer period. Organisations across the country offer soft loans of up to £25,000 for six per cent interest to businesses, social enterprises, and charities. The government’s Start-Up Loans is the perfect place to explore the range of opportunities available. Through this scheme, loans must be repaid within five years, and at a fixed rate of interest. Capital repayment holidays are also available, with monthly interest options.

2. The Prince’s Trust

For young entrepreneurs ages between 18-30, soft loans of up to £4,000 are available to support business ideas through The Prince’s Trust. With repayment options available over two to five years, and interest rates capped at three per cent, they’re ideal for young business owners.

3. Innovate Loans

Innovate loans are a financial product offered by Innovate UK. They are for UK businesses that want to scale up and grow through innovation, developing new or improved products, processes or services.The loans are for late-stage research and development projects only. A late-stage R&D project is one which builds on a new idea but has not yet reached the point of commercialisation.

You can use a loan to finance a late-stage research and development project categorised as experimental development.

Experimental development includes:

  • producing plans, arrangements and designs for your products, processes or services
  • developing commercially-usable prototypes and pilots
  • experimental production and testing of products, processes and services

To be apply for an innovation loan you will need to successfully apply into one of the Innovate UK loan competitions. You could borrow between £100,00 and £1 million to cover up to 100% of your eligible project.

4. The East of England Regional Growth Loan Scheme.

Supported by the Department for Business, Innovation, and Skills, is available to offer a comprehensive support programme to businesses based in the region.

The criteria for loan application can be found here.

Meet the team

Chris George<br />
Growth Hub Manager

Chris George

Growth Hub Manager

Chris is an experienced professional with over 30 years knowledge and experience in sales and marketing in the public sector along with 15 years working for two mainstream automotive manufacturers in the sub 10,000 fleet. Delivered sustainable change in a vast range of industries, whilst constantly updating and developing core competencies and knowledge.

Working in the Local Authority sector for the last 15 years has resulted in Chris turning around failing territories to becoming some of the best performing areas in the country, with excellent stakeholder engagement and a passion for premium delivery. Outside of work, Chris is a keen gardener, and also likes property restoration and reading.

Ashleigh Jackson<br />
Growth Hub Business Advisor

Ashleigh Jackson

Growth Hub Business Advisor

A proven senior influencer and sales professional with more than 25 years’ experience in brand building and driving category growth within the private sector.

“I have a strong research background, alongside vast experience in sponsorship and corporate events management.

My work has initiated good working partnerships with many Local Authorities across Hertfordshire, Essex, Cambridgeshire and London. I have also worked with many multi-national brands including KPMG, Barclays, EasyJet, Kingston Smith LLP, London Stansted Airport, Morgan Sindall and Heineken. I’m proud to be able to enhance on the work we do here at the CPCA Growth Hub and build on many success stories.

Away from the business, health and fitness is important to me, being in the great outdoors, and enjoying fun times and relaxation with family and friends”.

Stuart Thomas<br />
Growth Hub Business Advisor

Stuart Thomas

Growth Hub Business Advisor

Stuart is a former small business owner and former Business Link Advisor and has also worked as a project manager for an international IT company, overseeing a large number of IT projects for large corporate enterprises, as well as large public sector organisations.

Stuart has served as a director for an international timber trading company and has also been a director of a local independent radio station, where he mentored a number of new staff. Prior to this he spent time as a secondary school teacher, teaching IT and business studies at both GCSE and A level.

Liana Sannah Growth Hub Business Analyst

Liana Sannah

Growth Hub Business Analyst

Liana is an experienced professional with over 15 years’ experience as an Executive Assistant. Liana has previously been employed by Warner bros, Daily Mirror, Aviva and AXA. These roles have given her a wide range of skills and in a vast range of industries.

Liana has been working in the Local Authority sector for almost three years, as a Growth hub advisor and producing the Monthly BEIS report. In her leisure time, Liana enjoys cooking, interior design and watching movies.