The Scottish Government has announced the Pivotal Enterprise Resilience Fund, providing grants to businesses that can play a critical role in supporting Scotland’s recovery, but need some immediate support. The aim for the grants is to support businesses that have the potential to continue trading and supporting employment, but are currently suffering from immediate cash flow challenges, get back up and running or maintain current operations.
What is a Pivotal business?
The application process will allow each applicant to make clear their contribution to the economy and their community. You may provide evidence of your unique status or links to key workers and key sectors such as food suppliers or how you are of integral importance to local communities - our understanding is that businesses that offer vital employment to local communities (i.e. outside of the large cities) may be more likely to be deemed “Pivotal”.
Successful applicants will be able to provide evidence of, or demonstrate impact in, one or more of the following areas:
- Supporting Scotland’s productive capacity – through wage levels, employment, exports, Research & Development and innovation
- Local economic importance which would include areas such as, employee numbers relative to place, delivery of essential services, wider economic and community value; plus the socio-economic importance of the business in remote and rural areas
- Leverage on wider business community by demonstrating the impacts of your business on supply chain at a local, regional and national level
- Being a supplier or potential supplier to NHS or other COVID-19 vital services
- Being a supplier to other essential businesses
- Demonstrating a need to rapidly scale up or diversify due to COVID-19
Essential eligibility criteria and application requirements:
You must meet the following criteria in order to apply:
- Company has up to 249 employees that have been trading successfully before COVID-19
- Less than €50 million turnover or balance sheet total of €43 million
- Can demonstrate the funding will support business to be viable
- Business was not in financial difficulty before 31 December 2019
- The business is a Fair Work employer or working towards becoming a Fair Work employer
- Have a business bank account
For the Pivotal Company Resilience Fund, applicants must provide:
- Bank Details (you will be asked to upload a copy of a recent bank statement that is less than 3 months old and shows: account name, sort code and account number)
- Financial information including turnover figure from last year
- Provide employee information, including your full-time equivalent job numbers
- Last audited accounts if available or latest management accounts
- 12 month cash flow projection (template provided)
- Information on other financial support including COVID-19 funding
- Explain in what way you are pivotal to the local, regional or national economies
- Information on how the grant be used and how it will help sustain or expand trading
Other important information for the Pivotal Company Resilience Fund:
- Levels of employment and wages going into the local area will be considered when assessing applications and prioritising funding. This means, for example, that companies employing less than 10 full-time equivalents (FTEs) in the city centres of Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Dundee are unlikely to be successful unless they can demonstrate a substantial impact on the city, regional or national economies.
- Only one application will be accepted per company or group regardless of the number of branches, subsidiaries or parent bodies
- Human Rights Due Diligence checks will be required for grant applications over £100,000
- Grant should be for working capital to help meet a cash flow gap and secure your future in the medium-term - these can include payments for rent, wages, directors’ salaries, heat, light & power, materials, transport, financing costs-VAT/HMRC, creditor payment
- The grant can augment other funding from Government and other sources
Demonstrate that you are vital to the local, regional or national economy:
In this section of the application form, you should provide a brief outline of the wider contribution that your business makes to your local community or region of Scotland. As above, this could include benefits that extend to other businesses, local supply chains, associated employment and wider social and community benefits.
In addition, any benefits associated with increased R&D activity, innovation, export potential, increased productivity, diversity and equality, skills and training, supply chain opportunities and a net zero carbon economy could also be included.
The process for application and successful receipt of grant money is:
- If you meet the eligibility criteria your application will be reviewed
- Successful applicants will be notified
- They must formally accept the offer within 3 days
- Money will then be paid 100% upfront
You will be asked to confirm you are a Micro, Small or Medium Enterprise. The definition of these are set out below:
- fewer than 10 full-time equivalent employees; and either
- an annual turnover of no more than €2 million; or balance sheet total of no more than €2 million.
- fewer than 50 full-time equivalent employees; and either
- an annual turnover of no more than €10 million; or balance sheet total of no more than €10 million.
- fewer than 250 full-time equivalent employees; and either
- an annual turnover of no more than €50 million; or a balance sheet total of no more than €43 million.
It is possible to only accept one application per company or group if you have different branches, subsidiaries or parent bodies. If you are part of a group, to calculate the overall SME qualification you must combine the data (staff FTEs, turnover and balance sheet from last approved accounts) for each of the following:
- Enterprises that have a shareholding of between 25% - 50% in your enterprise or in which you hold a 25% -50% shareholding (add the relevant percentage for each to 100% of the main applicant data)
- Enterprises that have a shareholding of 50.1% or above in your enterprise, or in which you hold a 50.1% shareholding, are considered linked by majority control and 100% of the data of each must be combined.
- The same principle applies if a majority control (over 50.1%) is exercised through voting rights, legal or contractual rights that exercise a dominant influence.
- You are only considered an SME if the combined data is still with the thresholds. You must be no more than 249 combined employees but one or other of turnover (€50 million) or balance sheet total (€43 million) can be exceeded.
- If you have just exceeded the SME threshold in the last year due to an exceptional year, you could still qualify, if this was just temporary.
Businesses can access the application here: https://customerexperience.weareumi.net/supportbiz/Application.aspx
Should you require any assistance with your application, or discuss whether you may be eligible, please do not hesitate to contact our dedicated COVID-19 support team at email@example.com.