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New innovation fund for Argyll and Bute enterprises

Published: 24/07/2023

Small to medium sized businesses and social enterprises in Argyll and Bute are now able to apply to a new fund to help with innovation projects.

Small to medium sized businesses and social enterprises in Argyll and Bute are now able to apply to a new fund to help with innovation projects.

Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) has set up the Shared Prosperity Fund Argyll Programme after securing £280,000 UK Government funding from Argyll and Bute Council’s UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) allocation.

This programme is included in Argyll and Bute Council’s overall UKSPF Investment Plan, approved by the UK Government.

Delivered by the HIE Argyll and Islands team, the fund will prioritise support for innovation in productivity improvements, low carbon goods and environmental services, and climate resilience.

It offers grants of up to £10,000 for activity such as equipment and material costs, consultants and specialists, and costs relating to intellectual property matters.

Morag Goodfellow, HIE’s area manager for Argyll and the Islands, said:

“Innovation is fundamental to business growth. Helping businesses and social enterprises with innovation will increase their chances of attracting follow-on funding and ultimately reaching new market opportunities with new products and services. This is why we have developed this new fund.

“I’m delighted we have secured the support of Argyll and Bute Council’s UK Shared Prosperity Funding in order to launch this new programme and look forward to receiving applications from businesses and social enterprises across the patch.”

HIE’s new programme also supports graduate placements linked to specific projects, by providing 50% funding towards salary costs for a defined 12-month project.

This could support succession planning and long-term recruitment challenges, both of which are significant issues across the area’s business base.

Graduates must be located in the Argyll and Bute area and have graduated with at least an HNC in the past four years. graduate recruitment brings fresh talent and ideas into an enterprise.