Access To Finance

Access to Finance is a unique service across the region which enables companies to identify and access private and public funding opportunities.

If you are experiencing or planning for growth in your business and are in the Sheffield City Region, then we can support you by advising on how to access suitable finance support.

Securing Funding

We can help you secure funds from a variety of sources including, where appropriate, potential grant funding through our £52m Business Investment Fund. The service is supported by finance professionals all with extensive experience, who can discuss your growth plans and requirements with you and give you an impartial perspective on business plans and forecasts.

They’ll also be able to put you in touch with suitable commercial lenders including banks, finance houses, gap funders and peer to peer lenders; help you understand and negotiate the available publicly-backed financial products and services; help you pull together a suitable blend of finance, and help your business move forward. The Access to Finance Centre of Expertise is open to enquiries from businesses, however large or small, and also to advisors or intermediaries with general queries about the programme.

Eligibility for Support

To be eligible you must:

  • Be located in the Sheffield City Region and paying business rates to one of the nine local authorities in the region; although applications will be considered for businesses looking to relocate into the region.
  • Be a viable business, demonstrating growth or potential to grow and operating from commercial premises
  • Be able to demonstrate your project would not go ahead either as quickly or at the same scale without grant support – i.e. a clear case for a grant must be demonstrated
  • Be able to evidence that you have exhausted the traditional funding markets
  • Be planning capital expenditure
  • Be planning to create new jobs
Note: the grant cannot be used for working capital, training or research and development purposes.

If you have a growth project in need of funding support, contact the Growth Hub Gateway team to speak with an Access to Finance Advisor.

See how the Growth Hub has provided local firm PCT with financial support for expansion and growth.


Are you looking to invest to improve company productivity? Or are you currently considering adopting new industrial digital technology to thrive in the digital age?


We have a time limited call for investment projects under the following:

Business Investment Fund – Made Smarter in SCR  offers potential capital grants to support businesses to adopt new industrial digital technologies. Finance is available to support investment in projects that introduce new technologies for the first time or are a significant change from the ‘business as usual’ approach. This might include robotics, additive manufacturing or industrial Internet of Things projects. Businesses can apply for capital in the range of £25k to £50k.

Business Investment Fund – SCR Productivity Challenge  is an investment scheme potentially providing capital grants to support businesses to identify and address their business productivity challenges. The programme will support capital investment that boosts productivity in areas such as production or distribution processes, supply chain innovation and new product development. Businesses can apply for capital in the range of £25k to £100k.

This is a competitive process and projects will be scored on the strength of the business case. Projects must explain how the investment will improve business performance. We would like to see investment leading to jobs growth and supported projects must not result in job losses.

  • Investment proposals are invited from SMEs in the SCR. For the Productivity Challenge we are able to support a wide range of sectors.
  • Made Smarter in SCR is focused on the adoption of industrial digital technology and we would anticipate that applicants will be operating in the manufacturing sector.
  • Any grant awarded must be invested within 6 months of approval. You will be required to provide updates on the performance of your project for up to two years following completion.
    SCR may invest to a maximum of 50% of the project cost and businesses must co fund the remainder of the project.
  • The scheme is operated under the de-minimis state aid regulation. Businesses will need to provide information about grant funding received in recent years and if an applicant has received a grant recently this might affect eligibility.
Application Process

If you are interested in applying please complete an initial Expression of Interest form (stage 1) and email it to; The SCR team will then be in touch within one week to advise you if your project is eligible under these schemes and will then provide further information for you to make a full and detailed application for investment (stage 2).

The deadline for full applications (Stage 2)  is the 14th June 2019. Applicants should know whether they have been successful within three weeks of submitting a full application.

Download Expression of Interest Form

Read our FAQ’s or for further support; Contact us on 03330 00 00 39