Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)  


Ben Treleaven of ISO Spaces

A regional loan fund for small and medium sized businesses has just over £1 million to distribute before the end of December this year.

Since it was launched in 2009, Small Loans for Business has supported 200 businesses across the region with nearly £5 million worth of funds.

SWIG Finance, which adminsters the loan, is urging company owners across the region not to miss out on the potential for financial support for their businesses.

SWIG Finance is based in Truro and is particularly keen for businesses in Cornwall to apply for the loans. Since launch, exactly half of the loans numerically, totalling £2.3 million, have been distributed in Cornwall, with an average loan value of almost £25,000.

Small Loans for Business is part of the South West Loans Fund, a scheme part financed by the European Regional Development Fund which is aimed at both start up and existing businesses with growth potential.

Businesses can apply for up to £50,000 from the fund. SWIG Finance also has other funds available which can be used as part of a funding package of up to £100,000.

John Peters from SWIG Finance, said: “Many EU- backed projects stop at the end of this financial year but we are keen to emphasise that Small Loans for Business is far from drying up.

“With the economy reviving, now is a great time for small businesses to invest and we offer a solution for those companies which may find it hard to generate finance elsewhere.

“South West Loans Fund has been highly successful since it was launched in 2009 and we are keen to see all the available funds distributed before 2015 is out.”

Businesses supported by the fund include Truro-based ISO Spaces, which borrowed £50,000 to fund its growth and was 2014 winners of Oxford Innovation’s Ignite Competition.

Since the loan was granted, the company has taken on two graduate developers and is aiming to triple turnover this year.

Launched in April 2013, ISO Spaces designs and manufactures high specification bespoke modular buildings made from recycled shipping containers. The containers, which can be fully fitted out, are used for pop up bars and restaurants, contemporary designed modular accommodation and office space units.

Ben Treleaven, founder and director of ISO Spaces, said: “Without the backing of SWIG Finance we wouldn’t be where we are today.

“We are delighted with the support we have received from SWIG and the funding is going to help us hopefully tripling our turnover in 2015.