Women business grants have an added significance in the UK because of the large number of mumpreneurs starting out with their careers presently. The UK government is quite alive to the fact that a larger number of women entrepreneurs will mean an improvement in the national economy as a whole. For that reason, there are some laxities in terms of providing women business grants in the UK. Here we see some details.
Eligibilities for Grants
- Your grant eligibility will depend on where in the UK you are located. Different areas have different rules here. If you are located in a socially deprived area or an area where unemployment is quite high, then you have a better chance to get a business grant.
- The size of the business is another important concern. Larger businesses or businesses that have a better turnover stand a better chance for getting business grants. For most women business grants, the eligibility is for people who run businesses of fewer than 250 employees.
- The European Commission defines the criteria for business funding. To be considered worthy of a grant, the application has to be closely scrutinized by the Commission.
- The objective for the grant is also of importance. Women who apply for business grants in the UK have to mention what they want the grants for, such as improvement of working area, purchasing equipment and machinery, developing an export market or expanding the number of employees.
- Most importantly, the grant providers have certain objectives in mind with the grants that they provide. When they consider grant eligibilities, they see if giving out a particular grant meets with their predefined objectives.
Different Types of Women Business Grants in the UK
There are various grant types in the UK, and women who are applying for grants must see where they fit in and make appropriate applications. Here is a list of the different types of business grants that are available.
Grant for Business Investment (GBI)
This is a basic type of grant that is provided to buy the venue for business, tools and equipment, machinery, etc. As such, these grants are for capital investment needed for business. This grant has different local names. In Scotland, it is known as Grant for Regional Selective Assistance (RSA) and in Northern Ireland, it is known as the Enterprise Northern Ireland Loan Fund (ENILF). Their rules and restrictions are different from one another as well.
Research and Development Grants
These are grants provided for the promotion of innovations in terms of research and development. If a business is associated with producing an innovative product that can benefit society, or is endeavoring to do so, the business becomes liable for a grant.
Business Solutions Grants
Women who make suitable proposals for running profit-making businesses stand to become eligible for business solution grants. These women might ask for grants in various departments of their business solution exercise. For instance, they might apply for a grant just for the starting up of their business, finance management, skills and training development, implementing resources and ideas and such. Women who are looking at expanding their businesses by harnessing specific international opportunities are likelier to win business grants within the UK.
Another interesting criterion for women business grants in the UK is the businesses that use some kind of research and development for their SMBs. These businesses might partner with educational and academic institutions to further their research and development pursuits.
Training and Skills
This is a program that is specific to England. This is a service that helps businesses find out what kinds of skills they will need to operate and then they plan out various training modules for them to reach these skill goals. This program, called as Train to Gain, funds and even implements the requisite training for the growth of the business.
Applying for Women Business Grants in the UK
The first step in making the application is to find out which scheme you fit in. This is of extreme importance as grant eligibility essentially influences grant approvals.
Additionally, some preliminary groundwork needs to be done.
- You have to ensure that you have some investment to make on your own steam. No grant in the UK will cover for all the financial needs of your business.
- You have to convince the grant providers that you will use the grant money only for the stated person and not contrarily. This is verified regularly by the various grant providing bodies.
- You need to get an agreement about the grant that has been accorded to you. Without getting this agreement, you mustn’t start any of the business related work.
Once you have identified the area you fit in, you can make your grant proposal. This proposal needs to be extensive and elaborate and must include the following points:-
- A complete description of your project must be made. This helps the grant providers ensure whether or not they want to give you the grant.
- You have to lay bare the various advantages that the project will provide to society.
- A complete plan of your work must be mentioned, along with the expenses involved at each step.
- If you have any experiences in the same field as the one you are applying for a grant in, you have to mention that. You can enhance your application by adding the experiences of all the managers involved with the project.
- The application forms must be completed in all respects. Forms with incomplete areas might risk rejection.
- A detailed business plan could be a good idea to go with the grant proposal, but this is not a mandatory requirement.
What needs to be understood that it is easy to get women business grants in the UK, provided some eligibilities and requirements are met. You need to see where you stand and then make a proper application. For more details, you could visit the government website which is available at