UK government start-up scheme hits £50m Scottish milestone

Business owners in Scotland have received almost £50 million of funding in the ten years since a UK government support scheme was rolled out.

Start Up Loans has delivered more than 5,800 loans to fledgling businesses in Scotland since 2012, new figures from the British Business Bank reveal. Across the UK, the bank has hit an £800m start-up funding milestone.

Richard Bearman, managing director of Start Up Loans, said: “Delivering over 90,000 loans and providing £800m of funding is a huge milestone for the programme and reflects the ambition and determination the nation’s small businesses have demonstrated over the past few years.

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“It’s brilliant to hear the stories of how Scottish business owners felt when they said ‘yes’ to becoming their own boss.

Rory MacDonald received a Start Up Loan of £13,000 through British Business Bank delivery partner Transmit, in August 2018. This provided the essential tooling, materials, rent and insurance for him to open The Whisky Chairmen - a social enterprise making bespoke furniture from obsolete whisky barrels.

“Start Up Loans offer many great resources for entrepreneurs on the cusp of saying yes to starting a business. Our pre-loan support package, and mentoring scheme once a loan has been provided, mean all recipients are supported during one of the most exciting, but daunting, decisions of their lives.”

Rory MacDonald received a Start Up Loan of £13,000 through British Business Bank delivery partner Transmit, in August 2018. This provided the essential tooling, materials, rent and insurance for him to open The Whisky Chairmen - a Greenock-based social enterprise making bespoke furniture from obsolete whisky barrels.

MacDonald said: “I don’t often say ‘yes’ but the moment I decided to start the business and take out a government-backed loan with Start Up Loans, I chose to say yes to me, my idea, and to taking myself as seriously as I was asking people to take me.”

The Start-Up Loans Company, part of the British Business Bank, was formed in June 2012. The Start Up Loans programme provides personal loans for business purposes of up to £25,000 at a 6 per cent fixed interest rate per annum and offers free dedicated mentoring for 12 months and support to each business.

The funding for the Start Up Loans programme is provided by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS). The Start-Up Loans Company is a subsidiary of the British Business Bank.

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