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Black Country businesses urged to go for GOLD

Businesses in the Black Country could be eligible for up to £16,000 in grant funding to support their growth – but they need to act swiftly.

Black Country GOLD offers business development support and financial assistance to small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in the region.

The programme is currently inviting SMEs to apply for up to £16,000 to aid expansion projects. This means the money must be used for approved business costs, such as diversification, refurbishment, capital purchases, consultancy or development of key staff.

The grant covers 50 per cent of project costs with the balance being contributed by the business. To receive a £5,000 grant, for example, the business will also contribute £5,000 towards the project.

SMEs in the advanced manufacturing, building technologies, business services, environmental technologies and transport technologies are eligible to apply.

To boost the effectiveness of the grant, Black Country GOLD will give successful applicants one-to-one guidance in creating a growth plan, plus free access to seminars delivered by leading consultants.

The scheme runs until the end of June 2015 (with the deadline for final applications likely to be March 2015) but, as with every funding stream, the available finance is limited. Therefore businesses are urged to apply as soon as possible.

Applications submitted by Thursday 18 September 2014 will be considered by the Black Country GOLD assessment panel in October.

"Black Country GOLD could help businesses to obtain financial assistance to progress capital and revenue projects that will support growth,” said Councillor Ian Jones, Sandwell Council’s cabinet member for jobs and economy. "There are a huge number of ambitious, innovative SMEs in Sandwell who would greatly benefit from the funding and the tailored support that comes with it. If you have expansion ideas, I urge you to register your interest now.”

Interested businesses can learn more and submit their expressions of interest by visiting

The Black Country GOLD scheme is administered on behalf of the Black Country GOLD Management Group by Wolverhampton City Council’s Economic Development team, with funding provided from the European Regional Development Fund.


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