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Funding & Support

The Tees Valley is designated as an Assisted Area 'A' by the European Commission in agreement with the UK Government.  This means that from March 2017 an enhanced level of support can be made available for eligible businesses undertaking investment projects which will lead to sustainable growth and the creation of new employment in Darlington.

A suite of financial support is available to businesses considering locating to, or expanding in Darlington.

A selection of current schemes are detailed below, but to find out more about the support available to your business please get in touch.

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Tees Valley Business Support Schemes - the Tees Valley Business Support Scheme is delivered by BE Group, in partnership with UNW LLP, on behalf of the SSI Taskforce and Tees Valley Unlimited. Funding for the scheme is provided by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. The scheme has been set up in response to the closure of the SSI UK steelworks in Redcar to help UK businesses directly impacted by the closure together with other businesses based in the Tees Valley. There are 3 individual schemes:-

SSI Supply Chain Support Scheme - providing grant support to businesses in the supply chain of the SSI UK steel works.

Capital Grant Scheme - provides capital grant support up to £49,999 to businesses in the supply chain of the SSI UK steel works in Redcar, plus most manufacturing and service sector businesses (offering more than a local service) based in the Tees Valley. For capital grants of more than £49,999 the Capital Grant Scheme (£50k+ Grants) can provide support.

Small Grant Scheme [pdf document] - grant scheme provides support to most manufacturing and service sector businesses (offering more than a local service) based in the Tees Valley. The scheme offers small grants so businesses can access external expertise and professional services to help them overcome barriers to their growth, leading to the creation or safeguarding of jobs.

Tees Valley Growth Service - Growth Consultants will work with your business to understand the barriers that are currently preventing growth and to identify opportunities to improve performance. The range of support includes the Tees Valley Growth Fund, Tees Valley Business Fund Innovation Vouchers, Tees Valley Broadband Vouchers, and Tees Valley Energy Efficiency Fund

Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund - NPIF is a collaboration between the government owned British Bank and ten Local Enterprise Partnerships in the North West, Yorkshire & The Humber and Tees Valley and provides commercially focused finance to help SMEs start up and grow. The fund provides 3 strands:- Microfinance for recent start-ups and existing businesses seeking to borrow £25 - £100k to kickstart activity; Debt Finance for SMEs needing to borrow larger amounts to finance growth; and Equity Finance for SMEs with ambitious growth plans seeking an equity injection of up to £2m

Tees Valley Catalyst Fund - Provides the cash security required for performance and warranty bonds, for any company in Tees Valley.

North East Microloan Fund - investment fund established to provide debt and equity funding for new enterprises and the growth of existing micro and small businesses.


North East Growth Plus Fund (page currently unavailable) - single round debt, mezzanine and equity investments between £350k and £1.25m for North East businesses.

North East Growth Fund - set up to help ambitious companies that are looking to expand and create new jobs across the North East.

NBSL North East Business Support Fund - Grant of up to £1,400 towards a project worth up to £3,500 for almost any type of business support that will help your business to grow.

RDPE Growth Programme Business Development - the aim of the fund is to create new and expand existing micro and small businesses in rural areas in the Tees Valley LEP area to create new jobs and growth in the rural economy; Rural Tourism Infrastructure [pdf document] - these grants are for capital investments to develop and grow tourism in rural area. The aim is to support and enhance the tourism offer in rural parts of the Tees Valley LEP area, increase visitor spend and attract visitors to stay longer.