A £6,000 loan provided to a Stratford-upon-Avon business has signified a watermark moment for the Start Up Loans Company.
Since being established by the prime minister’s enterprise advisor Lord Young in 2012, the Start Up Loans scheme has been providing finance to UK entrepreneurs.
It has a target of supporting 30,000 business builders with £151 million by 2015, and is now two thirds of the way towards accomplishing it after its 20,000 loan meant lending had moved beyond £100 million.
The finance initiative is fronted by entrepreneur and former Dragons’ Den investor James Caan, who says, ‘This significant milestone is a great example of all the good work the team at the Start Up Loans Company are doing to help aspiring entrepreneurs of all ages across the country realise their dreams.
‘We are proud to be part of Britain’s economic revival and we will continue to strive to help the scheme growth. Hopefully it will only be a matter of time before we are celebrating the 30,000th loan.’
Back in December 2013, chancellor George Osborne revealed, as part of his Budget speech, that the Start Up Loans scheme was set for a ‘big extension’ to support the ‘new generation of entrepreneurs’ being developed. Some 50,000 more people would be hoped to fulfil their aspirations, he said.
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Other recent developments for the funding initiative included a partnership with Richard Branson’s new Virgin StartUp programme. In October 2013 it was announced that Branson’s venture would be providing loans to entrepreneurs aged 18-30 alongside the Start Up Loans Company.
Commenting on the move beyond £100 million and 20,000 loans, business secretary Vince Cable says, ‘The economic hardship we’ve experienced over the last few years has not stopped the flow of business ideas and people wanting to start up their own companies.
‘This British entrepreneurial spirit, backed by our loan scheme, will help create the iconic companies of the future. Reaching this milestone shoes how fertile the ground is for enterprise.’
The Start Up Loans programme is one of a number of government-led finance initiatives which are being brought under the umbrella responsibility of the British business bank. Recipients of loans also have access to the new Employment Allowance, giving £2,000 back to businesses through national insurance cuts.
Start Up Loans Company in numbers