Funding scheme helps East Sussex businesses to grow

Cllr Rupert SimmonsBUSINESSES in East Sussex are being offered help to grow and create new jobs through a county council-backed funding scheme.

East Sussex Invest 4 Business Growth Funding is the latest phase of a programme which has already paid out around £4.5 million in grants and loans, helping 140 businesses and creating almost 600 jobs over the past three years.

The money can be used for one-off capital projects such as upgrading or extending premises, buying new equipment or machinery or developing software.

A £1.3 million annual fund will be available to micro, small and medium-sized businesses and new ventures starting up.

The scheme is funded by East Sussex County Council and by loan repayments from previous funding rounds, which were backed by the Government’s Regional Growth Fund, and administered by business support service Locate East Sussex.

Cllr Rupert Simmons, county council lead member for economy, said: “This programme has had a real impact in helping new businesses to get off the ground and established companies to grow and expand.

“Money paid out in grants and loans is money well spent because it’s helping the East Sussex economy to flourish and new jobs to be created across the county.

“I’d urge any companies who may be able to benefit to get in touch and see how East Sussex Invest 4 can help their business to grow.”

So far, East Sussex Invest funding Grants and loans issued in the last round of East Sussex Invest funding included:

– £355,000 in grants and loans to enable a St Leonards-based food producer to create 40 new jobs by extending its premises
– £150,000 in grants and loans to help a sheet metal company in Eastbourne expand and create 15 new jobs
– A £40,000 grant to a Lewes-based clean energy company to help it launch two new hybrid generators, with the creation of five new jobs
– A £5,000 grant towards the start-up costs of setting up a shop in Bexhill selling motorcycle clothing and accessories, creating one and a half full-time equivalent posts.
— A £50,000 grant to a specialist brick works relocating from Gatwick to Sheffield Park and creating 7 jobs

For the latest round of funding, grants of between £3,000 and £25,000 and loans between £10,000 and £200,000 are available.  There is also an additional £1,500 available to businesses employing an apprentice.

A match funding guideline is 60 per cent minimum for grants and 50 per cent minimum for loans, with a guideline amount of a grant of up to £8,000 and loan of up to £16,000 per full-time job created.

Application forms can be obtained from Locate East Sussex by calling 0844 4159255 or e-mailing while more information is available online at