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CeeFar
24-03-2004, 11:39 PM
Hi there,

I am a 24 year old male who lives in Sheffield. At present I am working on a fixed term contract which expires in May. I have a business plan for a business I have been working on since graduating from university on July 2003. The funds required (after much refinement) is around 65,000.

Because I am currently working, princes trust cannot help me. Business Link (which has a sister company called SENTA in Sheffield) can only help me as far as a business plan and directions on where to get funding.

At present I am still looking to get funding. The South Yorkshire Investment Fund will not help my business because they say it is similar to retail. The banks tell me I have no security therefore they won't risk any money. Banks want all the profit and none of the risk! Vultures describes them well.

I even tried getting money through the small firm's loan guarantee scheme which is meant to be there for people in my situation - people that have no security to offer. But banks still will not offer me this option. They say the plan is excellent but are unwilling to go forward unless I bring something to the table.

Business angels are the only other option but a lot of these want to invest in businesses that require more money than what I need.

Do you think it would help if I applied pressure on the banks through the small firms loan guarantee scheme (DTI)? E.g by leaning on the DTI to do something about the fact that their initiative does not seem to be getting used by banks.

Alternatively, can you offer me any additional sources for funding, either in the form of a loan or better yet, a grant?

Many thanks for your help in advance.

KC

Statler
26-03-2004, 10:40 AM
Hi KC,

It sounds like you've exhausted every possible source of funding I am aware of in South Yorkshire, with the possible exception of:

http://www.yorkshire-forward.com

http://www.yorkshirefundmanagers.co.uk/

http://www.yorkshireventurefinance.co.uk/

Unfortunately, as you have found, when applying for grants (and even loans), you are expected to be able to provide at least 50% of your proposed costs. As you stated, this is because funding providers want you to take on board some of the risk involved in setting up a business.

Perhaps it may be worthwhile trying to re-work your business plan again, and seeing if you can lower the initial start up cost from 65,000. Barring that, it may be worthwhile investigating the option of venture capital / business angels:

http://www.bvca.co.uk/

http://www.nban.com

Good luck,

Lee