OxLEP’s Kickstart Grant Scheme will launch on 1 October

OxLEP’s Kickstart Grant Scheme will open for applications from local businesses for one day only on 1 October.

The application portal will open at 10:00 and will close at 17:00, or once the 250-application limit has been reached.

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What is the purpose of this funding?

The purpose of the Kickstart grant scheme is to help businesses who have been affected by COVID-19 to deal with the impacts of the pandemic and access specialist professional advice, equipment or technology to rebuild and support a quick recovery.

Who is the funding for?

The Kickstart grant scheme is open to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) based in Oxfordshire. Your business must meet the eligibility criteria for the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

The grant funding is split into two streams:

  • funding specifically aimed at tourism and hospitality-related businesses that depend on income from the visitor economy; and
  • funding available to any small or medium-sized business impacted by the pandemic

As part of the application process you will be asked if your business supports the visitor economy to determine which funding stream is applicable. Both grant streams will use the same online application form and process. 

How can I spend this funding?

  • Accessing specialist consultancy or professional advice
  • The purchase of small items of equipment or technology (cannot be used to cover PPE)
  • Adapting existing technology in order to continue to deliver business activity
  • Diversification of the business

For example, services such as HR support, HSE, legal, or financial advice, digital tools and software products, and small items of technology which offer improved productivity and / or delivery mechanisms to enable businesses to better deal with the impacts of COVID-19.

How much funding could I request?

Most grants awarded will be in the range of £1,000 – £3,000 although grants of up to £5,000 will be considered in exceptional circumstances at the discretion of OxLEP Business. This is a 100% grant scheme funded by Government through the European Regional Development Fund and there is no requirement for businesses to contribute financially.

Given the value of the grant programme allocated to Oxfordshire by the Government, it is expected to support around 68 – 120 local businesses, depending on the grant sizes requested by businesses who meet the eligibility criteria.


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