Business Support:

Access to Finance

We know that access to finance is an issue for our businesses, and that it can be a barrier to growth.

The sheer number of funding, grant and loan schemes on offer can also be confusing. The Access to Finance Strategy adopted by the Board is to promote the availability of external finance to local businesses seeking to grow thereby adding value to the local economy.

The Midlands Engine Investment Fund

The Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF), supported by the European Regional Development Fund, provides commercially focussed finance through Small Business Loans, Debt Finance, Proof of concept and Equity Finance funds.

The MEIF Fund aims to transform the finance landscape for smaller businesses in the Midlands and to realise the region’s potential to achieve economic growth through enterprise.

MEIF is a collaboration between the British Business Bank and ten Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) in the West Midlands and East & South East Midlands.

MEIF provides around £250m of investment to boost small and medium business (SME) growth in the Midlands through four different funding options:

  • Small business loans of £25k to £150k for new or growing businesses
  • Debt finance of £100k to £1.5m for established businesses that can demonstrate growth potential
  • Proof of concept/early stage equity funding up to £750k for start-ups looking to commercialise their innovative new product
  • Later stage equity funding of up to £2m for businesses with ambitious growth plans

The Access to Business Finance Guide

More information on finance options for smaller businesses can be found in the Access to Business Finance Guide.

This guide has been devised for businesses and advisors by the British Business Bank and the ICAEW Corporate Finance Faculty, supported by a further 21 major professional, membership and representative organisations. It is a unique guide that sets out the main things to consider and the finance options available to businesses – ranging from start-ups to SMEs and growing mid-sized companies. The guide also includes several tools and ideas to help businesses consider their finance options, make decisions and plan how they will finance expansion.

The Midlands Engine Investment Fund – Two Years On – Impact Webinar is available to view here

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