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leonburton leonburton is offline
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1
Stuck for finance...

Dear all...

Does anyone have an idea what sources of funding a 22 year old could obtain access to?

I'm planning to open a bistro within a city centre and I have found a fantastic opportunity. I have written business plan and all financial projections.

Due to my age the banks are just not interested. When I approached HSBC with the possibility of being secured by the Enterprise Finance Guarantee I was told that only if I requested £30,000 or over would I be eligible to apply for that. Barclays told me I would need to match the funding requested from them and it would still not be guaranteed.

This is incredibly frustrating and you would think the government would do more for those of us below 25 who HAVE an idea with all plans etc ready to go. I'm not even eligible for the Princes Trust as I'm employed!

Seems like nothing is out there to help right now.
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lordlancaster's Avatar lordlancaster lordlancaster is offline
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Gateshead
Posts: 1,336
Hi Leon,

have you applied for our £1,000 Shell LiveWIRE Grand Ideas Awards yet? It may not sound like much money, but you can generate a lot of PR for your business if you win which can open doors, create credibility and lead to further investment down the line.

If you win this month, you also have the chance of winning a further £10,000 in November!

Apply online before Midnight on 30th June at

(We also have some information on other sources of funding in our Business Library at
Paul Lancaster
Content & Social Media Specialist
Sage One UK
Follow me on Twitter @lordlancaster
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James Smith's Avatar James Smith James Smith is offline
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Abingdon, Oxfordshire
Posts: 2,044
Hi Leon,

It is probably not just your age, mostly ANY sort of borrowing needs matching finance of the banks wont touch it. A bistro is pretty high risk so this wont help either, in fact as a younger person you are probably in a better position than someone 15 years older in terms of available help. Ie they would have not a sausage of hope, as least there are a few things open to you such as Pauls suggestion about about the Grand Ideas which quite frankly is probably the best thing I know about for young people.

I am not commenting on whether this is "fair", "unfair", "right" or "wrong" it just is.

The best approach to this is to look at what funding you CAN get and then establish a business plan around what is there, rather than a business plan first and funding second. That is plan for what you can do and not what you cant.

I hope that helps, if not in the way you would perhaps like!

You may find you need a stage one business you can do with limited funds to "boot strap" to the project you actually want to do.

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ValentineS ValentineS is offline
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 4
I am 33 and have found it well nigh impossible to get help or start up funding in my city. If you're a start up over the age of 30 there isn't much help out there and I think the government should do more to support us as well. A three month JSA scheme is no good for most start ups - we need the same amount of support as the younger ones are getting. Speaking from experience, it's extremely difficult to both start up and maintain a new business with very little money behind you.
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Peter @ the company warehouse Peter @ the company warehouse is offline
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 3
I was looking at this issue yesterday for a blog article. The funding picture at the minute is fairly confused as the government is in the middle of changing lots of things and the banks are generally unwilling to lend.

As James Smith said it is going to be a case of working around funding. Having said that there are lots of small funds available. Many of these are for particular regions, age groups or industries. A couple of good places to look are:
The Business Link Finance Finder
Capital for Investment

Also a couple more ideas in the article I wrote

Hope some of that helps and good luck!
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Loudmedialtd's Avatar Loudmedialtd Loudmedialtd is offline
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 31
Hi Leon,

I dont know if this is something you may have considered... But why not try crowd funding as a way to gain finance for your business.

The way crowd funding works is you offer an initiative for people to donate money so for instance someone could invest £20 and get a thank you and a free cup of coffee from your bistro and so on.

It seems to be the new Big thing since banks and investors are just not prepared to take the risk in new young start up businesses. Another thing that may be worth a shot when its opened is the new government start up loans that i believe are anything up to £2,500 ( Please correct me if i am wrong) and it is a personal loan, check out the sub forum for the loans here -

And one last idea that may be worth a go why not approach local food and beverage businesses that are looking to sell their project and charge them a small fee to stock their items in your bistro. It may help.

I hope some of these ideas help you and good luck

Loud Media Ltd

Skype : Weareloudmedia
E-mail :
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allianceonellc allianceonellc is offline
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 5
You can also opt for grants. I would like to share that grants are like free money for small businesses. One can utilize this small business grants offered by the government to expand their business growth. Grants to start a business are a key form of financing and small business start up capital.
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