£20m European Funding Call for SME Support

Call title – SME Support in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly (ref OC05R18P 0897)

Closing date – 22 February 2019

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Up to £20 million is now available through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly for projects that will provide support to Small and Medium Enterprises (SME).  The funding forms part of the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth Programme, delivering economic regeneration from 2014-2020.

The call invites applications which support the delivery of Priority Axis 3 of the European Regional Development Fund Operational Programme (Enhancing the Competitiveness of Small and Medium Sized Enterprises) and respond to the local development need set out in the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Integrated Territorial Investment Strategy and on particular Strategic priority 2 ‘Growth for Business’

Small and medium sized enterprises and micro businesses are key drivers for local economic growth in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, as they make up approximately 99.8% of the total number of enterprises. At present, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly have the lowest levels of productivity of any of the Local Enterprise Partnerships in the country. To improve regional productivity it is essential that local companies are supported to collaborate, compete in national and global markets, increase productivity and identify business opportunities.

This call aims to build upon the progress to date of the 2014 to 2020 European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme and to endeavour to create a long-term business support landscape that will endure beyond the life of the current funding cycle.

A significant portfolio of business support projects is now operational in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. However, three specific strategic gaps have been identified in the current business support provision.

–           Raising productivity

–           Supporting small and medium sized enterprises which are neither ‘start ups’ or ‘high growth’

–           Supporting businesses in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly to extend their UK trade

The vision also includes an ambition to grow the creative industries sector to provide high value jobs, promote learning and strengthen a strong sense of place.

This call aims to fund business support provision that will close these identified strategic gaps, enhance competitiveness and increase opportunities for enterprise creation, growth, export and investment in the region.

Applicant support

Potential applicants can make use of the Access to the Programme Team who offer free specialist support for applicants and can be contacted on  accesstotheprogramme@cornwalldevelopmentcompany.co.uk

More information about how this team can help.