Start Up Loans scheme helps 55,000 firms
Since its launch in 2012, the Start Up Loans scheme has invested in more than 55,000 business with more than £400 million in loans nationally.
SWIG Finance has been the South West delivery partner for the scheme fund since the start, since which time it has supported almost 1,500 of the region’s start-ups with over £11 million alongside business support and mentoring. Businesses trading for up to two years qualify for support, as do entrepreneurs who may be taking over an existing business.
The scheme can also provide second loans for business owners pushing through a second wave of growth.
Among the entrepreneurs to have benefited from the fund is Charity Wilson from Lanner, Redruth, who developed a software platform called Mappix, designed to help teachers, children and schools, provide accurate assessments and reduce paperwork.
Charity needed investment to take the platform out of test trading and launch it to a wider market and approached SWIG Finance for funding. She says: “I needed finance in order to market the platform and continue to build and develop it. I worked with Aaron at SWIG Finance who was really helpful. He talked me through the different funding options and evaluated the loan amount with me to make sure it was right for the company and what I was trying to achieve as well as supporting with ongoing forecasting.”
Since receiving the start-up loan, Charity was able to take Mappix to exhibit at the NAHT conference in Liverpool in May where they were invited to partner with the hosts who shared the platform with their customer base, leading to great connections with lots of schools.
Mappixas now has customers using the platform in schools all over the country and interest has been received from as far away as the Cayman Islands. Sales are continuing to increase and Charity is expecting the launch of the latest updates to be even more positive as the platform develops.