Midlands and North East rake in milestone funding from The Start Up Loans Company
Midlands has received £57m of the £400m in loans given out by The Start Up Loans Company since launch in 2012, while the North East has secured £25m
The Midlands can stake a claim to being the UK's “most entrepreneurial” region outside Greater London, according to The Start Up Loans Company, which has lent more than £57m in loans to 8,079 small businesses in the region since launch six years ago.
The Start Up Loans Company – which offers small businesses up to £25,000 in low-interest loans – has also provided £25m in loans for small businesses in the North East of England.
The average loan size for the Midlands was £14,032. Only London, where 14,000 businesses have attracted £100m from the government-backed scheme, was more entrepreneurial.
Across the whole of the UK, more than 55,000 businesses have received £400m from The Start Up Loans Company to date.
Regional businesses thriving with Start-Up Loans
Midlands-based Lauren Taylor started Kokoso Baby with a £10,000 loan from The Start Up Loans Company after she struggled to find an effective, natural cream to treat her new baby's dry skin.
The company, which sells organic coconut oil toiletries made from ingredients sourced from an ethical farm in Thailand, now sells its products in 800 Boots stores across the UK. Kokoso Baby has also featured in Vogue and has listings with JoJo Maman Bebe, Ocado and Amazon.
Taylor commented: “As soon as we started dealing with Boots, it meant growing quickly, which created a range of challenges. The more product we sold, the bigger our cash flow issues became. Thankfully, the loan helped us to fulfil our orders.”
In Newcastle, brothers Sam, Tom, and Patrick Quilliam used a Start Up Loan to set up a cultural hub and tea house, which sources fine teas from around the globe and showcases the works of young, local artists.
With a £5,000 loan, the brothers renovated a historic premises near Haymarket. Quilliam Brothers now employs 24 people and opened a hostel in Montenegro in 2017.
Patrick Quilliam commented: “Drawing inspiration from around the world in the design of the space to our teas, but also supporting local artists, we're delighted by the success of our business in Newcastle.”
David English, chief marketing officer at The Start Up Loans Company, said: “Setting up a business can be tough, which is why along with our financial support, we offer all Start Up Loan recipients free mentoring to ensure they are supported along their journey.
“It is our aim to help as many new and early-stage businesses in the UK as possible and we look forward to supporting many more aspiring business owners.”