Adapt & Diversify grants scheme opens for second round
"The first round of grants saw over 50 businesses benefiting and they are already adapting their offer so that they can be sustainable, grow and continue to offer employment."
A Warwickshire County Council grants scheme which helped more than 50 small businesses adapt to the challenges of the pandemic is about to reopen for a second time.
The Council is inviting small businesses in the retail, hospitality, tourism and leisure sectors, and associated supply chains, to apply for a range of grants in the second round of its Adapt and Diversify grant scheme.
The scheme was launched to support businesses most affected by Covid-19 and complements the Government grants available through the District and Borough Councils by providing additional support for investment in external expertise, new equipment or the refurbishment of property.
Applications for the first round arrived at such a rate that the scheme had to be paused after only a day. More than 50 businesses received a combined £625,000 and a further £850,000 is now available in round two.
David Ayton-Hill, Warwickshire County Council’s Assistant Director for Communities, said: “We have relaunched the Adapt and Diversify grant scheme to continue our support to businesses who have been badly affected by the pandemic. The first round of grants saw over 50 businesses benefiting and they are already adapting their offer so that they can be sustainable, grow and continue to offer employment.
"That is terrific news and we are now in position to invite more businesses to do the same.
“The first round of this grant was very well received and had to be paused after just one day. Our County Council Officers worked tremendously hard to filter through the large number of applications and are poised ready for Round 2 of this grant programme to go live.
"I would ask that applicants familiarise themselves with what information is required for their application, so that they are best prepared when the online application process goes live. We are expecting this round to also to be very popular, so ask for businesses understanding, in that we will try to feedback to them as soon as we can.”
A webinar offering guidance on completing applications to give the best possible chance of a successful bid can be viewed here.
Grants of between £2,500 and £5,000 are available towards the costs of specialist advice –(accountants, legal advice, digital specialist) and between £2,500 and £20,000 for accessing speciality expertise and/or the purchase of new equipment or the refurbishment of property.
Lee Osborne, Development Manager, Warwickshire & Coventry Federation of Small Businesses, said: “I’m delighted to see Warwickshire County Council relaunch Adapt and Diversify. This programme offers real opportunities particularly for those in the supply chains of the retail, leisure and hospitality sectors who have been hit hard by the pandemic to access some finance to allow them to not only survive the immediate future but look ahead positively with a stronger business offer.
“I would urge any small businesses to attend the webinar or view it after the event in order to have the best possible guidance available before making their applications.”
The Adapt and Diversify grant application window opens at 9.30am on Monday 17 May at on a first come, first served basis with businesses urged to use the interim period to prepare their applications. For more details, please visit here.
For information about the wide range of other support for businesses, contact Coventry and Warwickshire LEP Growth Hub on 0300 060 3747.