01 April 2020

Covid-19 support for business

Businesses are advised to keep updated on the latest information and advice to inform their response to Coronavirus (COVID-19). Here follows links to advice and guidance.

Guidance for employers and businesses:
This guidance will assist employers and businesses in providing advice to staff on what you need to know, what to do if someone develops symptoms, sick pay, dependant leave and limiting the spread. See Government guidance here Guidance for Employers and Business

See Acas advice for employers and employees here  https://www.acas.org.uk/coronavirus

Premises & Business Closures government guidance here Premises and Business Closures Guidance

Support for the Self Employed
Here is information on the Self-employment Income Support Scheme announced by the Chancellor on 26th March. HMRC is working urgently to deliver the scheme; grants are expected to start to be paid out by beginning of June 2020. See further details here  Self-employment Income Support Scheme and Frequently Asked Questions here SIS Scheme FAQs

HM Gov Covid-19 Schemes

There are a range of measures and schemes available to businesses such as grant funding, business rate relief and loans. You can find out the latest updates and further details for businesses here on how to access the support that has been made available, who is eligible, when the schemes open and how to apply.

See HM Government Coronavirus Business Support

Summary information and quick links to business support options are below.

  • Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme – a temporary loan scheme to support small and medium-sized businesses to access loans, overdrafts, invoice finance and asset finance for up to £5 million and up to six years. Government will cover interest payments for 12 months and any lender-levied fees. Open now and delivered through accredited lenders. How to apply, eligibility criteria and how to access the loan scheme is here Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme
  • Cash Grant for Retail, Hospitality and Leisure – the cash grants of £10,000 or £25,000 will be available to businesses in these sectors. Anticipated that payments will be made in April. You do not need to do anything. Your Local Authority will write to you if you are eligible for this grant. See information here Cash Grant for Retail, Hospitality and Leisure
  • Small Business Grant Funding – the government is providing additional funding through Local Authorities to support small businesses that already pay little or no business rates because of small business rate relief (SBBR), rural rate relief (RRR) and tapered relief. This is a one-off grant of £10,000 to eligible businesses. Anticipated that payments will be made in April. You do not need to do anything. Your Local Authority will write to you if you are eligible for this grant. See information here Small Business Grant Funding
  • Covid-19 Corporate Financing Facility – the availability of this facility means that the Bank of England will buy short-term debt from larger companies. This will support companies which are fundamentally strong, but have been affected by a short-term funding squeeze. It will also support corporate finance markets overall and ease the supply of credit to all firms. How to apply, eligibility criteria and how to access the financing facility is here Covid-19 Corporate Financing Facility
  • Other Finance Options – A number of private lenders are also making funds available to small businesses impacted by COVID-19, including £2 billion from Lloyds Banking Group and £5 billion from NatWest. Businesses can also access a range of finance through the government-owned British Business Bank, visit the Bank’s Finance Hub for further information
  • Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme – Under the scheme, HMRC will pay employers a grant worth 80% of an employee’s usual wage costs, up to £2,500 a month, plus the associated Employer National Insurance contributions and minimum automatic enrolment employer pension contributions on that subsidised wage. See further details and the latest on how to access the scheme here Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
  • Time to Pay Service & HMRC Covid-19 Helpline 0800 0159 559 All businesses and self-employed people in financial distress, and with outstanding tax liabilities, may be eligible to receive support with their tax affairs through the HMRC’s Time to Pay service. Further details here Time to Pay Service
  • Business rates holiday, VAT Deferral, Income Tax Referral and other measures – see information on further support measures including frequently asked questions on the Government Coronovirus Business Support pages
  • Ventilator Production – can you help with ventilators or components? Details on the specification is here – ventilator system specification. If you think your business can help, please register your details here https://ventilator.herokuapp.com/
  • Personal Protective Equipment – can you help with supplying PPE such as disposable plastic aprons, gloves, face masks or alcohol-based hand sanitisers? If so, please email d-ccg.covid19PPE@nhs.net or somccg.ppecovid19@nhs.net
  • Fraud Alert – please be aware of scams and be alert to the risk that in these challenging times there may be people wishing to take advantage. Please do not provide bank details over the telephone. For more information and guidance, see Trading Standards Covid-19 Scams Guidance

Other National and Local Support for Business

This section highlights support and guidance offered by various organisations to support you and your business through the Coronovirus disruption.

Support for Business from outside of Government – this list is not comprehensive but you may find it a helpful starting point for further advice. See Other Support & Guidance for Business.

HotSW Digital Skills Partnership – have published information including advice to businesses on remote working, useful tools, webinars and other resources. See HotSW Digital Skills Partnership

HotSW Virtual Careers Fairs – the HotSW Careers team have put together a set of resources to help employees from businesses adversely affected. See HotSW Virtual Career Fairs

Remote Working Advice Line 0330 088 4421 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm). Provided by Cosmic, a Devon-based social enterprise specialising in all things digital, this free helpline is to provide advice and support on remote and home working to mitigate the impacts of Covid-19. You can access the free Remote Working Advice toolkit here.

New Technology Challenge Fund – Funding of up to £25,000 per company is available for innovators who can find digital ways to support people who need help during the coronavirus outbreak. For information on the programme and how to apply, visit techforce19.uk

Arts Council Emergency Funding – this is funding for individuals and organisations working in the cultural sector. See more details here Arts Council Covid-19 support

NEW – Prince’s Trust Rural Response Emergency Grants Programme – applications invited from farming and rural community support groups. Details here Rural Response Grants

Inspire & South West Growth Free Support 01884 220150 or 0177 2034288. Daily online drop in at 12:15-12:45 Join the session here Inspire SW Growth Drop In Session (Opens in Zoom)

NFU Covid-19 Business Impact Information Gathering Service – using the form on the link, farmers and growers can provide information on business critical issues. See NFU Covid-19 Impact Form

Are You Looking for Other Business Support Options?
Our Growth Hub team are on hand to help you navigate the business support options, find answers to your questions and put you in touch with the right schemes to meet your business needs and aspirations. Do Get in Touch and a Growth Hub Adviser from our team will get back to you.

Get in touch with an Adviser today


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