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Business finance

Funding and grants

Grant and loan schemes are available from a number of sources to support and help businesses grow. Some may be time-restricted or limited to specific business sectors or eligibility criteria such as size of business, specific sectors, location, purpose and so on. So please check with the provider to see if you are eligible. Further details of some of the more local and currently popular funds are detailed below but for ongoing funding updates on other funding as it becomes available you may wish to sign up to the Essex for Business weekly funding newsletter and Maldon District monthly funding news.


Essex County Council also provide a weekly funding newsletter for third sector businesses and organisations.

The SECCADS Programme

Provides match funded grants of up to £20,000 to creative, cultural and digital sector enterprises.
It offers 35% match funded grants up to £20,000 to SMEs in the Essex, Kent and East Sussex area, projects it could support include:
•Purchasing equipment. plant and machinery
•Supporting business development and expansion costs
•Purchasing patents, IT software and licences
•Developing new products or services
•Funding initial rent for new premises
•Creating a new permanent or freelance role
•Supporting start up costs eg. website development

If you are a creative, cultural and digital sector enterprise and would like more information on the SECCADS Programme email or tel 01375 652271.


TALE (Transport and Logistical Efficiencies)

TALE (Transport and Logistical Efficiencies) provides free support and funding contributions to SMEs in the transport and logistics sector or with a logistics function. It asks Is Your Data Working for You? as it creates opportunities to make the most of your data to improve profit margins and reduce costs. 

£1.9M of ERDF funding is available to help SMEs in Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex, Kent and East Sussex.

TALE Business Support Facilitators will work with you to establish practical steps to exploit your data.  Help can include a free 1 to 1 data assessment and support plan, free workshops from experts in the field, and grants giving you a 40% contribution towards implementing your company’s growth plan, for example bringing in a consultant to help implement your solution, starting a new service through your use of data, updating and purchasing software or employing a data specialist.

Up to £60,000 is available per eligible organisation, applications can be made at three levels of funding:

£1k to £10k Starter Booster Grant – for software or consultancy related to data.

£10k to £20k Step Change Grant – your project should include a new product or service (which could include new functionality or a different way of doing things).

£20k to £60k Transformation Grant – in addition to introducing a new product or service, this level of grant also would see a job created as a result of the funding being received.

To read more and apply now click here


Start up loans

Start Up Loans is a government-backed scheme helping individuals over the age of 18 to start or grow a business in the UK, the average loan is around £4,500. Alongside the low-interest loan, successful applicants can access free.


South East Business Boost (SEBB)

Support available:

  • 12 hours funded business advice with a start up or business growth advisor

Its focus is on Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) and start-up companies. The objective is to boost companies and increase employment through support and guidance. The project will improve business resilience, profitability and competitiveness.

If you are interested in accessing this service, email to register your interest.

If you are interested, contact the BEST Growth Hub team on 01702 417765 or


The Manufacturing Growth Programme Grant Scheme

The Manufacturing Growth Programme (MGP) provides free advice and support to manufacturing SMEs to help:

• Identify opportunities and create plans for growth and improvement

• Work with the best external experts to implement those plans

• Cover up to 35% of the cost of implementing the plans through a growth/improvement grant

• Connect to wider support to maximise opportunities for growth

For more information get in touch with your local Manufacturing Growth Manager, Sarah Goodwin

Email Tel  07973 778 255

Princes Trust

The Princes Trust provides 18-30 year olds with training and mentoring support through to funding and resources, to assist with the start up of their own business as long as they are living in the UK and unemployed, or working fewer than 16 hours a week, and have a business idea or some ideas to explore.