Business Investment for Growth 2 (BIG2) will comprise a further round of the successful Convergence Cornwall voucher/grant programme run by CDC which, over its 3 years of operation from May 2012 to June 2015, achieved its target outputs of 417 new jobs created and £12.3m of new GVA.

The project will operate across the whole of mainland Cornwall working via the Cornwall Growth Hub and with business support partners (including private sector firms) to identify and co-invest by way of non-repayable grant in businesses which demonstrate the will and the capability to grow.

BIG2 will co-invest to a maximum intervention level of 45% in growth projects brought forward by innovative, ambitious and well-managed businesses leading to new job creation and long term, sustainable business growth through the introduction of ‘new to the firm’ and ‘new to market’ products.
Investments supported will lead to product, process or service improvements with 75% – 80% of the investments likely to be capex in nature. Productivity improvements will be the lead driver of investments decisions.

The project will support 200 businesses creating 360 new jobs and will generate a total of ca £4.4m of private match funding for the ESIF programme.
During the Convergence Programme, the Business Investment for Growth project commissioned and reacted to an independent, longitudinal evaluation of the ongoing project, allowing process improvements to be implemented during the course of the project to the benefit of applicant clients and, ultimately, to the Convergence Programme through the achievement of targets. The delivery model, therefore, is well developed and able to be implemented without significant delay.

The delivery team will comprise a client-facing team of three professionals supported by CDC’s experienced Programmes & Funds Management Services and dedicated claims & monitoring functions.
Internal resources will be complemented by an independent steering group drawn from the local business (support) community and a private sector-led investment panel which will scrutinise and approve all investments of £15k and above, with smaller investments being approved by CDC on a discretionary basis.