The Government’s Start-up Loan scheme has helped more than 55,000 entrepreneurs grow their business, new figures reveal.
The scheme, launched in 2012, backs individuals with great ideas from all walks of life, particularly those from black, Asian and ethnic minority (BAME) backgrounds.
In fact, the figures show that around one in five loans have gone to BAME recipients – around 11,000 in total.
Across all projects, the report reveals that approximately 25 entrepreneurs are helped every day, with the average loan amounting to £6,480.
The Start-up Loan scheme is different to regular business loans, in that it is a Government-backed personal loan. Applicants also receive 12 months of free mentoring and exclusive business offers, such as assistance with their business plan.
The loan itself is unsecured, meaning entrepreneurs need no available assets to support an application, just a great idea.
The maximum funding available per applicant is £25,000, with up to £100,000 per business.
Commenting on the recent figures, Business Minister Richard Harrington said: “Through our efforts to create a fairer society, we are ensuring that entrepreneurs from all backgrounds can access the finance they need to make their businesses grow and succeed.
“The government is continuing to look at new ways to tackle racial inequality in our society and make sure that everyone has the same opportunities to progress.”
Sandra Kerr, race equality director, Business in the Community, added: “BAME employees often find they are not able to progress in traditional work environments so may choose to start their own businesses.
“Access to start-up finance is vital and we are encouraged to see government investment going into ensuring we have a diverse business community that reflects BAME talent and entrepreneurialism.”
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