Growing Business Fund Grant Panel Meeting Minutes (Confirmed)
Wednesday, 02 October 2019 | 10.00am - 12.30pm
Boardroom, Centre Parcs, Elveden Forest, Brandon, Suffolk, IP27 0&Z
Present - Panel:
Mike Burrows (MB)
Dr Sumathi Sundram (SS)
S&V Consultants Ltd
Jackie Potter (JP)
Martin Ince (MI)
Martin Ince Communications
Paul Stewart (PS)
Dominic Keen (DK)
New Anglia LEP
Jason Middleton (JM)
New Anglia LEP
Julie West (JW)
New Anglia LEP
Rose Joy (RJ)
New Anglia LEP
Barry Henson (BH)
Suffolk County Council
Neil Sargent (NS)
Amanda Castell (AC)
Mick Biegel (MB)
New Anglia Growth Hub
Actions outstanding | Updates from the meeting: Wednesday, 07 August 2019
Terms of Reference
- now uploaded onto LEP website. RJ to circulate copy to Panel members.
Update on Screenworks Limited
- AC reported that
evidence of match funding has still not been made
available by the business despite being chased.
Welcome and Introductions
MB welcomed everyone to the meeting.
Jeanette Wheeler, Birketts; Daryl Griffiths, Burnett Barker Solicitors; Max Applin, Max Applin Consulting;
Vimmi Hayes (VH), Suffolk County Council; David Dukes (DD), Norfolk County Council; Stuart Ager,
Finance East and Chris Dashper, New Anglia LEP.
Declarations of Interest and GDPR
Declarations of Interest
- NS declared an interest in Richmond Defence Systems Limited.
Meeting Minutes: Panel Meeting held on Wednesday, 03 July 2019
Minutes confirmed with minor amendment.
Applications to be ratified
Agreed to support.
Approved Grant: £71,469
Four full-time positions to be created.
New Applications for Approval (3)
Hollinger Print Limited - Agreed to support
Approved Grant: £57,000
Three full-time positions to be created.
Equipmake Limited - Agreed to support
Approved Grant - £121,997
Seven full-time positions to be created.
Richmond Defence Systems Limited - Agreed to support
Approved Grant: £70,000
Four full-time positions to be created.
Small Grant Scheme Update
JM provided update. The Panel noted the award of five Small Grant Scheme (SGS) grants in the month
of July 2019, totalling £40,237 (Grants Awarded) and £216,720 (Total Project Cost) and six grants in the
month of August 2019 totalling £38,838 (Grants Awarded) and £194,203 (Total Project Cost) - see
The recent slow-down in grant applications has continued and JM/BH have been in discussion to look at
run rate and value of grants. BH reported the average grant value has dropped to £8047 in July and
£6473 in August, against the overall Programme average of £9470.
Project Change Request (PCR) | Programme extension
JM reported that it has been decided not to proceed with a request for additional funding as it was felt the
LEP may be put at financial risk to deliver the additional funding, however, an extension to the
programme will still be requested for an additional three months for the Growth Hub activity (including two
new Growth Hub Advisers) and small amount of funding for Start-Ups
It was noted that the Small Grant Scheme may be impacted by the introduction of the new Innovation,
Research and Development Programme because the scheme will offer up to 50% intervention rate as
against the Small Grant Scheme intervention rate of 20% (and up to 30% in assisted areas).
General discussion took place on intervention rates.
There will be a further call for funding in the New Year and if there is an uplift in grant applications will put
in for the additional funding then.
Interaction with Growth Hubs
- observation made that business interaction with Growth Hubs can vary
according to area due to the variation in how the LEP and Growth Hub is set up.
Funding, Updates and Jobs Creation
BH updated the Panel on the overall funding position, job creation and updates on five previously
approved grants where there have been recent developments:
Growing Business Fund
- £430k has been paid out since the last Panel meeting in August, making the
total for the year thus far £1.59m, with a further £922k committed including today’s Approvals, leaving
£1.341k still to be allocated.
A further 54 jobs have been evidenced since the last Panel meeting, making the overall total now 2,222.
Small Grant Scheme
- BH advised that overall Small Grant Scheme spend is now £2,26m (251 grants)
with 37 further grants approved but not yet claimed - £470k. There is £496k still to allocate, but plenty of
time on SGS. We are £726k into the extension funds, approx. 43% and £47k into the February quarter’s
target of £151k. The recent slowdown has continued throughout the latest claim period to the end of
August; however, the Small Grant Scheme remains three months ahead of profile.
The new products and services target for the whole Growth Programme has now been passed (63
against target 53) and the jobs total from the Small Grant Scheme now stands at 117 (up nine) /(target
Updates on previously approved grants
a Small Grant Scheme approval at £25k, switched to GBF after discussion with the
move from London to Norfolk (Little Melton) may not now take place. Grant of
£400k may have to be returned to Government.
£36k grant approved in May, not yet taken up and spend may now be much lower.
Grant likely to be reduced to £21/22k.
had hoped to be presenting this update with their full Business Plan, but still not
received. Further update next month.
Oil & Gas Scheme grant of £120k approved August 2016, finally completed!
It was noted that both the Growing Business Fund and the Small Grant Scheme had seen a slowing
down of grant applications in recent months and that three of this year’s Growing Business Fund Panel
meetings have been cancelled due to few or no applications .
It was noted that currently the money finishes March 2021 and the Growing Business Fund Panel will
have to look carefully at projects being approved to ensure that we can achieve spend therefore need to
put in place a timetable for spend.
Going forward question was raised as to whether the Growing Business Fund will be continued when the
current funding period ends. JM reported that the LEP are currently in talks with Government regarding
succession of further funding, but discussion has been held up by Brexit. The LEP would like to continue
funding but to date the Government have not identified a further pot of funding.
GBF Applications ‘Pipeline’
AC provided update. Presently there are ten cases in the pipeline at various stages of which six are
currently waiting for planning permission. Approx. £1m in total.
The Panel asked if there was anything that could be done to improve the pipeline. JW reported that there
is a good pipeline but Expression of Interest (EOIs) are not converting to actual applications. In addition,
the Growth Hub Advisers are seeing a long lead time for applications. It is hoped that whatever happens
politically regarding Brexit that we see an increase after the end of October.
PR and Marketing
JW provided update. Of note:
Growth Hub website
- about to go ‘live’
- Emma Finn ,Pathfinder East, being engaged on short term contract to produce case
studies covering the whole of the Business Growth Programme over the next six months.
- one day training course being held on 22 October 2019 to learn how to create short
videos which can be used to promote our activities and businesses, especially useful for social media.
- new suite of printed material/pop-ups being produced.
Any Other Business
- JM provided update. The LEP has been involved with four bids to BEIS for Brexit funding:
LEP supporting a joint Norfolk and Suffolk Chambers bid (£40k) for a Marketing and PR campaign
to provide Brexit advice. Deadline for bid was 27 September 2019 with monies to be spent by end
A LEP bid (November 2019 - March 2020) to do a similar campaign to complement the Chambers
Marketing and PR campaign
A LEP bid to employ two Growth Hub Advisers to be recruited on short-term contracts or as
consultants to provide dedicated Brexit support out of the Growth Hub.
BEIS funding of £28k to provide enhanced Brexit business intelligence gathering on business
issues and impact of Brexit. This will pay for the LEP to on Brexit issues and provide weekly
report to BEIS
Get Ready For Brexit | Brexit Business Readiness events
- free event being held in Ipswich on
Tuesday 08 October, 2019.
- link sent Monday, 07 October 2019:
New Anglia LEP Brexit - advice for your business -
The Department for International Trade (DIT) are also doing EU Brexit workshops nationally and are
running a series of East of England workshops.
Growing Business Fund application forms
- new forms now in use
Growing Business Fund Guidelines
- uploaded onto the LEP website.
- The meeting scheduled for Wednesday, 04 December 2019 will now be held at
Concertus Design and Property Consultants (Boardroom), 2 Friars Bridge Road, Ipswich, Suffolk, IP1
The meeting closed at 12.05pm
Wednesday, 06 November 2019 |10.00am - 12.30pm
Centrum (Meeting Rooms G01 & G02), Norwich Research Park, Norwich, NR4 7UG
New Anglia Small Grant Scheme projects approved in July 2019
The Space Burston
Clenshaw Minns Ltd
Able Cleaning and Hygiene Supplies
Sabrefix (UK) Ltd
E Rand & Sons Limited
New Anglia Small Grant Scheme projects approved in August 2019
EGM Products Ltd
Saw Media Ltd
ASBT Holdings Ltd
Intelligent Resource Management Ltd
Suffolk Yacht Harbour Ltd
Twyfords To You Ltd