A Guide to Business Startup Grants for Over 30s
Over the age of 30 and in need of some funding for your small business? Wherever you’re based in the UK, we got you covered. In this article, we have culled together a comprehensive list of business startup grants from all over the UK.
Innovate UK Smart Grants Programme
Innovate UK Smart Grants Programme delivers ambitious Research & Development innovations with significant potential for impact on the UK economy. Funding rounds are open at various points throughout the year. To lead a project, your organisation must:
- be a UK registered business of any size
- be a UK registered research and technology organisation (RTO)
- carry out all your research and development (R&D) project activities in the UK
- intend to commercially exploit the project results from the UK
- be or involve at least one SME
SBRI: the Small Business Research Competition
SBRI: the Small Business Research Competition aims to develop open software, hardware and data solutions that address the challenges of transforming to a net-zero energy system in the UK. A total of up to £1.2 million, inclusive of VAT, is allocated to this competition. Each contract will be up to £300,000 inclusive of VAT and cover each project for up to 9 months. To lead a project, you can:
- be an organisation of any size
- work alone or with others from business, research organisations, research and technology organisations or the third sector as subcontractors
£250,000 Start-Up Series
£250,000 Start-Up Series is designed to uncover new UK businesses with bright teams and smart ideas. Each month they aim to select one business to qualify for an equity investment of up to £250,000, along with invaluable support from experienced & successful entrepreneurs. They are open for entries from the first to the 14th of every month with a quick and easy application process to follow. Because the investment will come from an EIS & SEIS fund, businesses that are considering entering will need to satisfy the following criteria set by HMRC:
- You must be a UK resident and run a UK-based business
- You must be over 18 years old at the time of entry
- Certain financial services and property businesses are unlikely to qualify
Countryside Stewardship (CS)
Countryside Stewardship (CS) provides financial incentives for farmers, woodland owners, foresters, and land managers to look after and improve the environment. The scheme is:
- open to all eligible farmers, woodland owners, foresters, and other land managers
- suitable for many types of land use, for example, conventional and organic farmland, coastal areas, uplands, and woodlands
- scored against local priority targets for the competitive elements of the scheme to maximise environmental benefit
Grow It Award
This one is for entrepreneurs who aim to solve a social issue. You can apply for up to £15,000 to help you grow and a support package of one-to-one coaching, training, mentoring and access to networks. They’re focusing their funds on building access to employment, developing resilient communities and finding solutions for an ageing society.
The Deutsche Bank Award for Creative Entrepreneurs
DBACE is one of the startup grants that supports visionary creative entrepreneurs between the ages of 18 and 30 who are driven by a mission to create and sustain social value through their enterprise. The prize package is designed to give you everything you need to power up your idea or existing business so that you can take it to the next level. To apply, you need to:
- Be 18-30 years old
- Have a strong idea or an existing business in the creative industries
- Want to create a positive social impact through your enterprise
- Be focused and committed
- You don’t need to have already set up your business
CRACK IT Challenges
CRACK IT Challenges is a challenge-led competition that funds collaborations between industry, academics, and SMEs to solve business and scientific challenges that will deliver scientific benefits, either by improving business processes or developing a commercial product. Depending on the challenge, contracts of up to £1M for up to three years are available.
The ALPHAS Project
The ALPHAS Project seeks to create a conduit for Knowledge Exchange between Universities and SMEs to solve business problems, creating capacity within the business for further employment and supporting the regional aim to retain graduate talent within the local area. Through the ALPHAS project, you could get:
- Grants of 30% towards the cost of equipment or academic expertise
- The chance to upskill current staff through a free 12-hour workshop programme on leadership & management, digital technology, staffing for the future, and financing your own growth.
- Academic expertise from the University of Bedfordshire or University of Northampton
- Funding to cover 60% of salary costs for a graduate for three-six months – including free academic consultancy, to set your plans in motion
New Anglia Small Grants Scheme
New Anglia Small Grant is one of the startup grants that awards grants between £1,000 and £25,000 to entrepreneurs who want to grow their businesses. The Small Grant Scheme, funded by the European Regional Development Fund, has awarded nearly £4.4m to 446 projects, generating about £18.5M of private match funding.
Elmbridge Start-Up Fund
Elmbridge start-up fund is a one-off grant of up to £1,000 (up to 50 per cent of the eligible cost) to go towards start-up costs, such as marketing or buying equipment. You’ll need quotes from traders and a business plan which includes a sustainability section.
Business Growth and Digital Growth Grants (GLLEP)
GLLEP awarding grants to SMEs looking to increase turnover or create jobs. It can contribute between 40% and 50% of your overall costs, ranging from £1,000 to £5,000. Your firm must be based in the Greater Lincolnshire area, and your grant activity proposal must be agreed upon with a Business Lincolnshire adviser.
Small Growth Grants (Dorset)
Small Growth Grants (Dorset) scheme invites applications, and successful grant applications will be provided 25 per cent of eligible project costs. The minimum grant amount is £1,000, and the maximum is £5,000. So, for example, to receive a grant of £5,000, the total project cost will be at least £20,000. Eligible project costs include capital equipment, new premises works and fitting, new digital capability adoption, and expertise outsourcing.
Lancashire Manufacturing Growth Fund
Lancashire Manufacturing Growth Fund is one of the startup grants that supports ‘relatively significant’ projects with a value of around £10,000 and warrants a grant of about £3,000. It’ll fund 30 per cent of your project. Again, those projects that lead to job creation and increased productivity are most desirable.
Supports ‘relatively significant’ projects with a value of around £10,000 and warrants a grant of about £3,000. It’ll fund 30 per cent of your project. Again, those projects that lead to job creation and increased productivity are most desirable.
Invest to Grow, Derbyshire
The University of Derby supplies loans between £15,000 and £250,000 to support private businesses across the East Midlands to innovate, grow and create jobs. The following sectors are also preferred: manufacturing, life sciences, construction, engineering, and low carbon.
Brexit Readiness Vouchers
Brexit Readiness Vouchers give you financial support up to £2,000 towards professional advice relating to Brexit matters like the movement of labour, goods, services, and currency management. Your company must be a registered small business to be eligible.