Small businesses could receive backing to export and grow through a new grant scheme being launched this month.
The Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Enterprise Partnership has teamed up with UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) to deliver the Exporting Voucher Scheme. It will support small businesses to develop their international markets. Vouchers will be offered in the form of small grants, offering a subsidy towards costs of market development.Â The grants are available to prepare small businesses to export and develop the international trade of their goods and services. Businesses must be based within the Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire LEP area.
The Exporting Voucher Scheme has been funded by the Governmentâ€™s Regional Growth Fund through Lancaster University, which is leading the creation of 15 new growth hubs across the UK. The hubs are being developed for wave 2 City Deal areas and focus on support for small businesses.
Local Enterprise Partnership Chairman David Frost said: â€œExporting can make a real difference to business and our economy. This initiative will support small businesses preparing to take their first steps exporting products and services to new overseas markets. The grants are available until March 2015, so I would urge businesses to get in touch with UKTI now to seek advice and to see if they are eligible for this financial support.â€
Robert Lawley, Head of International Trade, for UKTI Staffordshire said: â€œThis is an excellent and exciting opportunity for our team to deliver a core aspect of the LEPâ€™s growth hub project, which helps local companies to expand.Â We will support the activity of businesses that are planning to export.Â The grants will go a long way to support many businesses within the LEP area, enabling them to develop their exporting plans with the dedicated support that our UKTI team can provide.â€
For more information on the Export Voucher Scheme, including eligibility criteria and how to apply, people should contact the UKTI team directly on 01782 202222.