Alternative funding

When you can’t find the finance you need from traditional sources, there are plenty of other avenues for you explore.

Midlands Engine Investment Fund

From the British Business Bank, The Midland Engine Investment Fund is available for businesses located in the Aylesbury Vale. This fund of £250m is targeted at assisting the growth plans of existing businesses.

Funds are available for:

  • Proof of Concept. Up to £750k
  • Small Business Loans £25k to £150k
  • Debt Finance £1000k too £1.5m
  • Equity Finance Up to £2m.

The Enterprise Investment Scheme

The Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) is designed to help smaller higher-risk trading companies to raise finance by offering a range of tax reliefs to investors who purchase new shares in those companies.

Business Growth Fund (BGF)

The mission of the Business Growth Fund is to unlock the potential of fast-growing UK businesses that need long-term capital to drive their future success. The BGF has up to £2.5bn with which to make long-term equity investments.

Funding Circle

Through Funding Circle, businesses can borrow directly from a wide range of investors, including more than 40,000 people, the UK Government, local councils, a university and a number of financial organisations.

UK Business Angels Association (UKBAA)

The UKBAA is the national trade association representing angel and early stage investment. The UK Business Angels Association connects all those involved in the angel investment market with a view to ensuring a coherent ecosystem for financing the growth of start-up and early stage businesses.


Crowdfunding is still a relatively new phenomenon, but has captured the attention of hundreds of thousands of people looking for investment. If you are struggling to finance your business venture, advertise on crowdfunding sites and you may get investors from all over the world pitching in to help. Money invested through most crowdfunding sites does not have to be returned.

For more information and a list of crowdfunding sites try the UK Crowdfunding Association.

Equity crowdfunding

As opposed to regular crowdfunding, if you raise funds through equity crowdfunding you will have to give something up, i.e. equity, a stake in your business.

One example of an equity crowdfunding platform is Seedrs, which allows people to invest as little as £10 into a business.