A subsidiary of Tata Steel has launched a new £6m scheme dedicated to driving forward businesses within England’s steel regions, including two in the North East.
UK Steel Enterprise has announced the Equity Growth Fund, which has backing from the government’s Regional Growth Fund (RGF) with a mission to support firms committed to expansion and sustainable employment.
UK Steel Enterprise is inviting applications from companies interested in accessing funds of up to £1m to help drive growth and deliver job opportunities within their local communities and the finance will be available to support a range of projects.
The scheme is available in the steel regions of Tees Valley and the Derwentside area of County Durham, as well as West Cumbria, South Yorkshire, Humberside, The Black Country, Stoke-on-Trent, Chesterfield, Worksop and Corby.
The fund is the latest initiative from UK Steel Enterprise, which has helped more than 6,000 organisations to date, and continues the company’s tradition of investing in expanding businesses which can create jobs.
Simon Hamilton, UK Steel Enterprise managing director, said: “This new fund allows us to invest more money in a greater number of companies to support their expansion ambitions.
“Part of the fund will be aimed at young, early stage companies with high growth potential, while established companies can apply for amounts up to £1m.
“Businesses with a clear strategy to drive recruitment opportunities in the local communities in which they operate are encouraged to get in touch and discuss the funding options available.
“As an organisation, we are committed to supporting sustainable business growth – making sure that we implement a finance solution that is appropriate, whilst ensuring that management teams retain full control of their company.”
UK Steel Enterprise is one of 50 projects and organisations to receive support from Round Five of the government’s Regional Growth Fund, which is expected to unlock £1.9bn of additional private sector investment and create or safeguard thousands of jobs, while also generating thousands of jobs in the supply chains.
Greg Clark, Minister for Universities, Science and Cities, said: “This £6m boost for the midlands and northern steel regions will support growing businesses as they create jobs.
“This investment from the Regional Growth Fund is a great example of how business and government can work together to create the jobs that are fuelling our recovery and building a stronger economy.”