Wales Economic Resilience Fund: is your business eligible for support from the next phase?

Wales Economic Resilience Fund: is your business eligible for support from the next phase?

Businesses registered in Wales can now find out if they are eligible to apply for financial support from the next phase of the Welsh Government’s Economic Resilience Fund (ERF).

The online eligibility checker has reopened this week, allowing you to check your eligibility for the COVID-19 ERF. This tool will help you to prepare for the opening of applications at the end of the month.

The ERF is designed to support businesses, social enterprises and charities that have not been eligible for other Welsh Government and UK Government support schemes. It is non-repayable, however, it’s available on a first come first serve basis. To date, almost £200m of ERF funding has been distributed.

The next phase of the fund will enable businesses in Wales to access a further £100m of financial support. It is being targeted at microbusinesses, SMEs and large businesses of critical economic importance, that have yet to receive financial assistance from the ERF.

Changes to the scheme

This latest phase will operate in broadly the same way as the first phase but with an update to the eligibility of the micro scheme. This will enable limited companies which are not VAT registered to access the fund, subject to other criteria being met.

Large businesses, which have suffered more than a 60% reduction of turnover since 1 March 2020 may also qualify for funding if they meet other conditions. A further £10m has been available from the ERF to support larger firms.

Are you eligible for business support?

You may be able to apply for support, providing your business meets a number of conditions. If you’re in receipt of a Development Bank of Wales loan, it does not preclude you from the ERF either:

Micro businesses (up to £10,000 of support available)

  • Demonstrate efforts to sustain business activities
  • No funding support was agreed under phase one of ERF or from business rate relief scheme
  • In excess of a 40% reduction in turnover since 1 March 2020
  • Sole traders will need to be VAT and PAYE registered
  • Limited companies will need have annual turnover exceeding £50k
  • Non eligible for non-domestic business rate grant
  • Operating address and employer in Wales

SMEs (up to £100,000)

  • In excess of a 60% reduction in turnover since 1 March 2020
  • Not eligible for business rate relief scheme, or if it is, the amount would be deducted from the allocation from this fund
  • Did not receive phase one ERF support /non-domestic rate relief support will be deducted
  • Operating address and employer Wales
  • A sustainable business plan exists to trade beyond the Covid-19 pandemic
  • Inability to access funding needed from a bank (including DBW and the British Business Bank) is demonstrated; and
  • An undertaking that for as long as the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is in place, no future compulsory redundancies will be made

Large businesses (up to £690,000)

  • In excess of a 60% reduction in turnover since 1 March 2020 has been experienced, or a 60% reduction in turnover is forecasted between the time of application and the end of the project
  • Not eligible for business rate relief, or if it is, then the amount will be deducted from the amount allocated from this fund
  • Operating address and employing at least 40 people in Wales
  • A sustainable business plan exists to trade beyond the Covid-19 pandemic
  • Inability to access funding needed from a bank (including DBW and the British Business Bank) is demonstrated
  • An undertaking that for as long as the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is in place no future compulsory redundancies will be made; and
  • Agreement to match fund support.

We recommend you use the fund checker tool to confirm your eligiblity: https://fundchecker.businesswales.gov.wales 

How to apply

The scheme will launch on 29 June 2020 on a first come, first serve basis.

We recommend you follow announcements from Welsh Government over the next week when the scheme launches, in order to access the application process.

In the meantime, please call us for specific advice on your circumstances – 01633 810 081 or email us at info@kilsbywilliams.com