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Extra help for firms

Holyrood boosts business support by £40 million

Seafood Restaurant

The hospitality sectort has been hard hit

The Scottish Government’s Business Support Fund has been increased by £40 million to provide additional help for key sectors of the Scottish economy.

This extra funding will be split between the Pivotal Enterprise Resilience Fund, which has increased by £30m to £120 million and the Creative, Tourism & Hospitality Enterprises Hardship Fund, which has increased by £10 million to £30 million. Both funds closed to applications on 18 May.

The Pivotal fund for vulnerable SMEs has already been doubled from its initial £45m to £90m in response to a deluge of applications which forced it to be suspended for a week 24 hours after opening.

The new funding comes as pressures mount on business survival ahead of the Scottish government providing guidance on a route map out of lockdown.

New figures today reveal that the hospitality industry has suffered the biggest loss of jobs because of the impact of the coronavirus.

Cabinet Secretary for Economy Fiona Hyslop said: “We are listening to what businesses need.

“Our creative, tourism and hospitality sector is one where we know there are particular pressures.

“These funds are supporting businesses the length and breadth of Scotland and continue our commitment to ensure every penny of the additional business money that has come to Scotland is passed on to support our economy.

“Crucially, we are also focusing our efforts to help those who are not captured by the UK Government schemes.”

Businesses can visit for the latest information on funding opportunities.

The funds which make up the £185 million support package are as follows:

  • £34 million Newly Self-Employed Hardship Fund, managed by Local Authorities, allocated to the newly self-employed who are ineligible for UK support (as they became self-employed since April 2019) but are facing hardship
  • £30 million Creative, Tourism & Hospitality Enterprises Hardship Fund, managed by the Enterprise Agencies with support from Creative Scotland and VisitScotland for small and micro creative, tourism and hospitality companies not in receipt of business rates relief with grants of up to £25K
  • £120 million Pivotal Enterprise Resilience Fund, managed by the Enterprise Agencies providing bespoke grants and wrap around business support to viable but vulnerable SMEs who are vital to the local or national economic foundations of Scotland

The Scottish Government is also providing £1 million to top up Creative Scotland’s Bridging Bursaries scheme in the not-for-profit sector.

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