Coronavirus Business Advice for Local Businesses - 6 May

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Plymouth business news

6 May 2020

Please find below an overview of the latest advice and guidance for COVID-19. In today's newsletter you will find news and updates including:

  • Top up to local business grants fund scheme
  • Bounce Back loans launched
  • Self-employed invited to get ready to make their claims for COVID-19 support
  • Coronavirus Loan Schemes extended for Further Education establishments
  • Virtual events/webinars
  • Latest funding and support information
  • Latest Economic Development blog

If you have any specific concerns or are in need of support please contact us.

Top up to local business grants fund scheme

Last week the Government announced a  discretionary fund that has been set up to accommodate certain small businesses previously outside the scope of the business grant funds scheme.

We are currently awaiting further guidance from Government in how the local authority can allocate and process these grants. We are working as quickly as we can to be able to announce details of who will be eligible and how these grants can be applied for.

This is a step in the right direction to support businesses who are in great need of support, and a positive result from our lobbying. However this fund is not anticipated to be able to support all businesses in need, and so our lobbying efforts will continue.

As soon as details are available about this additional grant fund money we will share via all of our available channels.

Find out more here.

Bounce Back loans launched

The Bounce Bank Loan Scheme was launched this week to help small and medium-sized businesses to borrow between £2,000 and £50,000.

The government will guarantee 100% of the loan and there won't be any fees or interest to pay for the first 12 months.

Loan terms will be up to 6 years. No repayments will be due during the first 12 months. The government will work with lenders to agree a low rate of interest for the remaining period of the loan.

Find out more here

Self-employed invited to get ready to make their claims for COVID-19 support

This week, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) will start contacting around three and a half million customers who may be eligible for the government’s Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) to explain the application process and help them get ready to make a claim.  

The claims service will open on 13 May and is being delivered ahead of the original timetable.

Find out more on Invest Plymouth

Coronavirus Loan Schemes Extended to Further Education Establishments

The Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) will ensure that more UK firms are able to benefit from public money during this difficult time. The scheme provides a government guarantee of 80% to enable banks to make loans of up to £25 million to all viable firms with an annual turnover of more than £45 million and up to £50 million for those with a turnover of more than £250 million.

Previously, these schemes were only targeting businesses. Now, eligibility for the loans has been widened to also include further education establishments across the UK.

Find out more here

Virtual events

Managing Finance Webinar

Hosted by Real Ideas Organisation, Thursday 7 May 2020, from 1pm to 2pm

Managing finance when the world has turned upside down – join RIO for a panel discussion about the different ways enterprises are approaching the immediate and medium term challenges we all face to keep businesses afloat, support staff and try to plan for an uncertain future.

Find out more here


Virtual Networking Brunch: An opportunity to meet up with other business people and share experiences.

Hosted by Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce, Thursday 7 and 14 May, from 9.30am to 10.30am.

Introducing the first Chamber Virtual Networking Brunch event – an opportunity to connect with like-minded businesses and professionals in an informal online setting.  

The team will go through some quick introductions before facilitating a discussion around how everyone is adapting and identify opportunities, partnerships and relationships.

Imagine being sat round a relaxed networking table – without leaving your home. Feel free to treat yourself to brunch at the same time!

Find out more here


Chamber Live Virtual Event on Zoom - Are you claiming for everything you are entitled to from local and national government financial support schemes?

Hosted by Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce, Monday 11 May, from 2pm to 3pm.

Experience their virtual panel session where they will be providing their business community with a platform where you can find expert advice in different subjects that are impacting on us all at this time, and the opportunity to ask questions of the panel about your own specific situations. 

Registrations will close at 11am on Sunday 10 May and you will receive joining instructions on Monday 11 May at 9am.

Find out more here


Government webinars

Government departments are hosting a series of free webinars this week to help businesses understand the support available including: 

Keep up to date with all the latest available webinars here

Funding streams and competitions

Sky Launches £1m TV Ad Scheme to Boost SMEs During COVID-19 Crisis

SME100 is an advertising support scheme for small businesses, created by Sky Media. The £1 million fund will provide 100 businesses with television advertising campaigns via AdSmart to support them during the difficult times brought about by coronavirus (COVID-19).

Applications are now open via an online application form. The one-month campaigns must be completed on or before 31 July 2020.

Find out more here


Grants for BAME Music Makers in Coronavirus Lockdown

Opera North Projects, part of the national opera company for the north of England, has launched ‘Resonance: The Lockdown Edition’ – a scheme to support UK-based music-makers exploring new ideas and collaborating with other artists under the current, uniquely challenging circumstances.

As part of a drive to address the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on artists and the making of music, the funder wants to hear from professional UK-based music creators from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) backgrounds, working in any genre.

The deadline for applications to be received is Friday 8 May 2020 at 10am.

Find out more here


Relief Fund Launched for Zoos and Aquariums Affected by Coronavirus

The Zoos Support Fund has been launched to aid licensed zoos and aquariums in England that have been affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Establishments covered by the Zoo Licensing Act will be able to bid for a portion of the £14 million that has been made available. Individual grant awards will be capped at £100,000.

Find out more here


For more information on the latest virtual events, or to upload and promote yours, visit Invest Plymouth's event page here.

Submit your events here

David Draffan, Service Director for Economic Development, Plymouth City Council Blog

David Draffan, the Service Director for Economic Development at Plymouth City Council, regularly writes blogs on Linkedin which sets out some of the work that is being done for the business community that you may find interesting to follow.

View the latest blog here


Did you know we are on Linkedin? Join us here for more regular updates.


Keep up to date with news and advice on our COVID-19 business support page 

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