EDGE – Encouraging Dynamic Growth Entrepreneurs, to invest up to £50,000 in entrepreneurial businesses
The Scottish Government has unveiled a new £1 million Scottish entrepreneurs fund to help accelerate innovative business ideas.
Finance Secretary John Swinney announced the new entrepreneur fund today, called EDGE – Encouraging Dynamic Growth Entrepreneurs.
The Scottish Government said it has worked closely with its enterprise agencies, Royal Bank of Scotland and business hothouse Entrepreneurial Spark in developing the new fund, which will invest between £20,000 and £50,000 in entrepreneurial businesses with the aim of stimulating economic growth.
Entrepreneurs Sir Tom Hunter and Sir Willie Haughey will sit on the fund's investment panel along with other entrepreneurs, business leaders and representatives from Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and representatives of Scotland’s enterprise agencies.
Swinney said: "The Scottish Government is looking at new and innovative ways for the private and public sectors to work together to assist business growth in Scotland.
“That is why we are establishing a £1 million fund to unlock investment for entrepreneurs.
"This government and our enterprise agencies are focused on maintaining Scotland’s position as the most supportive environment for business in the UK.
“Scottish EDGE will target ambitious entrepreneurs wishing to establish or grow their business and will provide real opportunities for them to contribute to Scotland’s economic success."
Sir Tom Hunter added: “This is a huge boost for entrepreneurs in Scotland – John Swinney and the Scottish Government should be commended for recognising the need and indeed acting upon it.
“Hopefully this will help further boost high growth businesses in Scotland.”
Sir Willie Haughey said: “I am absolutely delighted to be involved in Scottish Edge and in assisting Jim Duffy with the E-Spark initiative, which has played a key role in developing this fund.
“This scheme is something that Scotland has been crying out for. I have no doubt that this support for start-up businesses will increase the success rate.”
The Scottish EDGE will be operated by Scottish Enterprise and Highlands and Islands Enterprise.
It will taking applications from November 1, 2012.
Applicants will be expected to submit a short, focused business plan and a 60-second online video pitch.
Shortlisted applicants will then attend one of three pitching days across the country.
A further shortlist will then be created of applicants going forward to a high level investment panel in spring 2013.
Applicants can find more information here