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£40 million European Funding Call – Enhancing the Competitiveness of Small and Medium Sized Enterprises
Enhancing the Competitiveness of Small and Medium Sized Enterprises
Call closes - 23:59 on Friday 10 November 2017
Download the full call specification – Read more
Up to £40 million is now available through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. The funding forms part of the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth Programme, building on Convergence funding to deliver economic regeneration from 2014-2020.
This call invites outline applications which support the delivery of priority axis three (PA3) of the European Regional Development Fund operational programme and respond to the local development need set out in the Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly Integrated Territorial Investment Strategy.
This call focuses on Investment Priorities;
· 3a - “Promoting entrepreneurship, in particular by facilitating the economic exploitation of new ideas and fostering the creation of new firms, including through business incubators.”
· 3c – “Supporting the creation and the extension of advanced capacities for products, services and development.”
· 3d – “Supporting the capacity of small and medium sized enterprises to grow in regional, national and international markets and to engage in innovation processes.”
The call aims to:
· Fund business support provision;
· Fund business support provision that will enhance competitiveness and increase opportunities for enterprise creation, growth, export and investment in the region; and
· Increase the availability of high quality workspace in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.
Specifically this call aims to address the following business support areas:
1. New Projects - New projects which address one or more of the three identified strategic gaps, or any other clearly defined strategic gap in provision identified by the applicant and which is not met by the current business support provision.
2. Project Enhancement - Projects that enhance the productivity and competitiveness of existing small and medium sized enterprises, encourage new enterprise, support small and medium sized enterprises to grow through innovation, and provide improved opportunities to export and secure additional investment. If existing grant recipients are applying to continue activity, evidence of success and demand for extension of the project should be demonstrated. Projects which can combine project extensions with closing the strategic gaps in provision outlined, or align with other currently contracted projects, would be particularly welcome.
3. Workspace - The provision of market led, high quality, modern and well located workspace. Low commercial property values and high development costs have for many years rendered commercial property development unviable in all but a few prime locations. As a result, many businesses are located in outdated accommodation, often not suiting their requirements or their aspirations. Priority will be given to projects that are able to demonstrate that they will result in the creation of new, high value knowledge based jobs with higher than average salaries for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. The jobs must be located within the new workspace.
Proposals should demonstrate alignment with local development need and priorities including:
Complementing the existing portfolio of business support projects in the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership area;
Working closely alongside the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth and Skills Hubs to offer a joined-up, transparent and integrated business support service for businesses. It is expected that all funded projects will work with the hubs to avoid duplication of communications, events and engagement activities while ensuring the maximum return on European Regional Development Fund investments;
A demonstration as to how delivery will be extended to the Isles of Scilly and remote and rural areas of Cornwall;
The embedding of the inclusion (for Cornwall: http://inclusioncornwall.co.uk/about-us/strategy/) and environmental growth (for Cornwall: http://www.cornwall.gov.uk/environmentalgrowth) strategies outlined in the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Integrated Territorial Investment Strategy. In addition, the principles of inclusion and sustainable environmental growth need to be articulated with specific reference to the Isles of Scilly.