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Business Recovery Grant

In response to the demand for increased support for SMEs, government has committed an additional £30m from the England European Regional Development Fund. £10m to support visitor/ tourism economy and £20m for the wider economy businesses.

Liverpool City Region have the following funding available for grants;

  • £283,000 for Visitor/ Tourism economy businesses which equates to approximately 94 grants
  • £752,000 for the wider business economy, this equates to approximately 250 grants

We are expecting huge demand for these grants therefore if you are unsuccessful in obtaining one, please be aware we do have a wealth of other business support options available to you, and these can be discussed with your Local Growth Hub.

The grant scheme will be open for a second round of  applications in early October 2020.

The grant is open to all SMEs based in Halton, Knowsley, Liverpool, Sefton, St Helens, and Wirral, who have been trading since before 1st March 2020 and have been impacted by Covid 19. Applications should only be made for grants to assist with Covid 19 recovery and not ‘business as usual’, personal protection equipment (PPE), social distancing or other regulatory activity or for projects that have already started.

Due to the limited funding and expected high demand, we will be operating a number of application rounds with a maximum number of applications being accepted per round.

The first round will open on 16th September 2020 at 10am, in this round we will be accepting 50 visitor/ tourism economy applications and 100 wider economy applications. This is to allow time for applications to be reviewed, processed and approved. The application links will close when the limit has been reached and will re-open again, the following month. This will be repeated until all funds have been allocated.

We will update this web page and communicate the opening dates via social media. Please follow us on @growthplatform @localgrowthhub

Decisions will be made on applications on a first come, first served basis so we recommend that you fully read the FAQs below and prepare the information for your application prior to the opening date, this will enable you to submit your application as soon as possible after the grant window opens for applications. Failure to supply a complete detailed application may result in your application being declined.

There is no obligation for businesses to contribute financially as the grant is fully funded.  However, you will have to make the initial payment for the support or purchase and claim the grant back. The VAT element of any support or purchase is not eligible for grant support.

Further information, including eligibility criteria and the information you will need to have ready to submit an application are detailed in the FAQs below. Links to the application forms will show when the grant is open to accept applications.

Due to the volume of demand demonstrated so far, we are unfortunately unable to provide further information by telephone or email. All enquiries are being directed to this webpage.

Temporarily Closed for Grant Applications

Due to an overwhelming response we have now reached our limit for the first round of applications. Therefore, we have temporarily closed the website for further applications in order to allow time for submitted applications to be reviewed, processed and approved. If you were in the process of filling in an application a member of the team will contact you in due course.

The website will re-open early October 2020 for further applications. Prior to this we will update this web page and communicate the new date via social media one week before.

Please be aware we do have a wealth of other business support options available to you which can be discussed with your Local Growth Hub at any time.

The Recovery Grant has been created, specifically to help Small and Medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in the Liverpool City Region to adapt and diversify following the impact of COVID-19. Funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), eligible SMEs can access grants of between £1K – £3K.

All Small and Medium sized enterprise (SMEs) in the Liverpool City Region can apply.

You are an SME if you have less than 250 employees and an annual turnover of less than £45.1m or a balance sheet of less than £38.8m.

There are some exceptions to this, if you are part of a larger group for example but this will be assessed as part of your application.

You can apply for a grant of between £1,000 and £3,000.

The grant aims to help your business adapt or recover from the impact of Covid 19.
You can use the grant to pay for;

  • Specialist 1-2-1 advice. Such as accountancy, financial, legal, health and safety, ICT support etc

Examples of eligible expenditure on specialist 1-2-1 services include:

  • Review of the business strategy
  • Strategic review of business models
  • HR, financial and legal advice
  • Coaching and mentoring in leadership and management development / Change management
  • Innovation strategy to adapt and diversify products/services
  • The introduction of new technology
  • Developing or revising marketing/digital strategies to reach new markets
  • Mitigating the impact of social distancing measures
  • Rebuilding a viable business model
  • Developing product offerings
  • Legal and environmental health compliance
  • Skills analysis and development plans
  • Workforce management
  • Employee engagement, welfare and wellbeing

Please note these are examples only and not an exhaustive list.

  • Purchase of minor equipment to adapt or adopt new technology to support your business to deliver or diversify. (For example, a tourism business may need to purchase a second cash register to enable adequate social distancing in its gift shop.)

You will need to submit three written quotes from three suitable suppliers with your application. These quotes, if dated, must be dated after 8th September 2020. If you are not choosing the supplier with the cheapest quote you will need to demonstrate how the chosen quote offers the best value for money.

Each application must only relate to one service or purchase from one supplier. This may include several linked items to be purchased from the same supplier e.g SEO and social media support.

Links to the application forms will show above when the grant is open to accept applications.

There are two application links:

  • One for Visitor Economy businesses
  • One for businesses in the wider economy.

Please ensure you select the correct application link for your business sector.

When opening the application link, there is an initial eligibility questionnaire that will continue to the full application should your business be eligible. Once you have completed the application form you will be directed to Signable, our electronic signature provider, to enable you to sign the document before submitting it for consideration.

You will need to have the following information to had when completing the eligibility questionnaire-

  • Company number (if applicable)
  • Business name
  • Business address including postcode
  • Principal activity of business/ SIC code
  • Date began trading
  • Name and contact details of the person applying on behalf of the business
  • Staff headcount
  • Turnover at the end of the last financial year
  • Company VAT details
  • Details of any previous De Minimis State Aid support

As part of the full application you will need to provide details about your business and the project for which you are seeking funding, this includes details of;

  • Ownership and shareholders
  • The impact of Covid 19 on your business
  • Proposed project details including value, start and end dates
  • If the grant will help you retain or employ and/or if it will assist you to introduce a new product or service to your business or to the wider market

You will need to submit three written quotes from three suitable suppliers with your application. These quotes, if dated, must be dated after 8th September 2020. If you are not choosing the supplier with the cheapest quote you will need to demonstrate how the chosen quote offers the best value for money.

If successful, you will receive a Grant Funding Agreement (GFA) via Signable, our electronic signature provider. This will provide you with the value of the grant awarded, along with details of how you can claim the grant and the Terms and Conditions.

The GFA will need to be returned to Growth Platform along with a Service Level Agreement signed by both you and your supplier (an example SLA can be found here).

When you are fully satisfied with the completed work or have received the equipment and have made your final payment to your supplier, you will need to submit claim evidence to Growth Platform. This will be in the form of

  • a copy of the invoice from your supplier,
  • copy of your business bank statement(s) showing payment to your supplier leaving your bank account
  • an invoice to Growth Platform for the grant amount

The application form is completed online. You will need to obtain three written quotes from three suitable suppliers for your project and submit those with your application form.

If successful, you will receive a Grant Funding Agreement (GFA) by email via Signable. This will provide you with the value of the grant awarded, along with details of how you can claim the grant and the Terms and Conditions.

The GFA will need to be returned electronically to Growth Platform along with a Service Level Agreement signed by both you and your supplier (an example SLA can be found here).

When you are fully satisfied with the completed work or have received the equipment and have made your final payment to your supplier, you will need to submit claim evidence via email to Growth Platform, these will need to be certified as true copies, details of how to do this will be in the GFA. This will be in the form of

  • a copy of the invoice from your supplier,
  • copy of your business bank statement(s) showing payment to your supplier leaving your bank account
  • an invoice to Growth Platform for the grant amount

A written quote can be, for example, an emailed price from a supplier, pdf of direct tailored quote or a screenshot of a price from a supplier website.

We are expecting there to be a high volume of applications for this grant and we will aim to respond to all applicants within 4 weeks.

We expect to be many times oversubscribed for these limited funds so there will be many good applications that are unsuccessful. If yours is unsuccessful we will ask one of our Local Growth Hub Partners to get in touch to discuss alternative options and support opportunities.

When you are fully satisfied with the completed work or have received the equipment and have made your final payment to your supplier, you will need to submit claim evidence via email to Growth Platform. This will be in the form of

  • a copy of the invoice from your supplier,
  • copy of your business bank statement(s) showing payment to your supplier leaving your bank account
  • an invoice to Growth Platform for the grant amount

We will ensure we pay you within 7 days of receiving your grant claim.

We cannot pay you the grant until you have had the work completed to your satisfaction and paid your supplier.

You will be wholly responsible for ensuring the work you commission is carried out to specification and is of a satisfactory standard. The agreement will be between you and your supplier. Growth Platform cannot be held responsible for any issues or the quality of the work.

You can apply more than once if your application has been unsuccessful, but you can only receive one grant. If you have received a grant already you cannot reapply for further funds. Once you have received a grant, one of our Local Growth Hub partners will get in touch to discuss other support available to benefit your business.

You will be able to claim the VAT if your business is not VAT registered. Therefore, the maximum you will be able to claim is £3,600 consisting of £3,000 plus 20% VAT of £600.

Please note you will not be eligible to claim the VAT back from HMRC in the future if it has been paid by the Recovery Grant.

If your business is registered for VAT you will not be able to claim the VAT element though the Recovery Grant.

Checks will be made to ensure the VAT status of applicant businesses; incorrect information may lead to your application being declined.

Yes. Your supplier can be based anywhere. However, we actively encourage businesses to take advantage of the wealth of outstanding suppliers within the City Region. Local suppliers are often more cost effective and accessible too. The Local Growth Hub has a community of experts based across the City Region that can be used to source quotes.

Please note Growth Platform do not endorse any of these suppliers nor do we have preferred suppliers.

Yes. When you have completed the initial eligibility section, the full application form will open up. At the bottom there is the option to save and continue later.

You will be given a link to revisit or can ask for this link to be sent to you by email.

Yes. When you have submitted / signed your application a confirmation email and copy of your application will be sent to you.

Yes. When you have submitted / signed your application a confirmation email and copy of your application will be sent to you.

You can pay your supplier in full or by instalments. However, no payments should be made until you have received your Grant Funding Agreement and your Service Level Agreement has been signed by both parties.

If you make payments to your supplier in instalments, evidence of each payment leaving your business bank account will need to be provided.

Evidence of payment is required. The payments need to be made from your business account which has the same name as the business applying for the grant.

The fund is for projects that will complete brfore 28th February 2021. This is the absolute deadline, projects that extend beyond this date will not be eligible for funds. If a project has been issued a Grant Funding Agreement and the work over runs past this date then the grant cannot be paid.

You need to have paid your supplier and sent your claim to Growth Platform by 10th March 2021, claims submitted after this date cannot be paid.

The grant must cover 100% of the service your business is procuring (up to a maximum total project value of £3,000). This grant cannot be used to part-fund expenditure.

If your project is more than £3,ooo you may be eligible for a New Markets Grant which offers 35% contribution towards the cost of commercial advice. Please contact Growth Platform to discuss this alternative or click here for further details.

If you wish to change suppliers you will need to reapply as your application was accepted based on the information you submitted at the time of application, Should anything change than we will need to re assess our decision based on the new information.

Please note we cannot guarantee that you will be able to submit a new application due to the limited number of applications we can accept.