New government funding and support for businesses

Learn all about the new grants for SMEs, separate grants for tourism and hospitality businesses, a new peer-to-peer support programme, and more.

Peer Networks

Peer Networks is a peer-to-peer networking programme for SMEs, delivered in Buckinghamshire by Buckinghamshire Business First.

Peer Networks enables you to make connections that go far beyond networking and is designed for business leaders who want to grow and develop their organisation for future success.

By completing Peer Networks, you will:

  • Overcome business challenges and recognise and act on new opportunities
  • Build a trusted network of connections to support you now and in the future
  • Improve your long-term personal and business performance

Who is it for?

The programme is available to any SME business that has:

  • Operated for at least one year
  • At least five employees
  • A turnover of at least £100,000
  • An aspiration to improve

The programme includes:

  • Action-oriented learning
  • Trained facilitators
  • Small groups
  • Flexible topic selection
  • One-to-one

Register your interest in joining Peer Networks.

New grants for small and medium-sized businesses

The government has announced two new packages of support to help existing and established businesses across England get back on track.

Part of this package will be the allocation of 120 grants of between £1000-£3000 to businesses with a minimum turnover of £50,000 prior to COVID-19, comprising:

  • Grants for eligible small and medium-sized businesses
  • Separate grants for eligible businesses in the tourism and hospitality sector

These grants will provide 100% funding for a project between £1,000 and £3,000 (excl. VAT).

The Buckinghamshire Business First Growth Hub will be responsible for allocating these grants in Buckinghamshire when they become available in September.

Expressions of interest for this grant have now closed: 

If you expressed an interest in this grant via the Buckinghamshire Business First website on or before the 18th September 2020, and you meet eligibility criteria, you will be contacted by the Buckinghamshire Business First team with an application pack in due course. 

The allocation of these grants will be on a first-come basis and due to the anticipated high demand, please be aware that not all applications will be successful.

Please look out for our email communications and until that time we will be unable to respond to individual enquiries.

If your address is outside Buckinghamshire, please see the appropriate local Growth Hub in that area for information about the grants that they can provide.

Small Business Leadership Programme

The Small Business Leadership Programme will focus on strengthening decision-makers’ leadership skills, so they are able to address management challenges, some of which, such as remote working, have arisen from coronavirus. The programme aims to equip business leaders with the confidence and leadership skills to plan for the future of their business, and ensure that they are in a great position to recover from the impacts of coronavirus.

The 10-week programme – which will be delivered virtually by experts from university business schools – will teach participants how to maximise their business’s potential by improving productivity, organisation and efficiency. Businesses will undertake a series of 90-minute webinars delivered by leading business experts, and will also be required to complete up to two hours of independent study and peer supported learning per week.

Learn more about the Small Business Leadership Programme.

Stay informed of the latest business support re: COVID-19

Remember to visit our COVID-19 business support hub for the latest support and information from the government, business support organisations and other avenues of support. Bookmark so you can easily find it in the future.

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