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An overview of the British Business Bank

Delyth Edwards, Senior Manager, UK Network – North West England, at the British Business Bank

What is the British Business Bank?

The British Business Bank is a government-owned business development bank dedicated to making finance markets work better for smaller businesses. We aim to drive sustainable growth and prosperity across the UK, and to enable the transition to a net zero economy, by supporting access to finance for smaller businesses.

We promote sustainable economic growth by prioritising providing smaller businesses with the right financial resources they need to start, thrive, and expand regardless of their background or location.

We are also dedicated to supporting innovation by ensuring that innovative companies have access to necessary capital.

Working towards a modern and greener economy, we champion groundbreaking solutions to combat climate change and assist smaller businesses in transitioning to a net-zero future for their prosperity.

The British Business Bank operates independently from the government, partnering with over 130 institutions, including banks, leasing companies, and venture capital firms, to facilitate access to financing for businesses across the UK.

What is your role at the British Business Bank?

As senior manager for the North West, I work closely with funding delivery partners, business development agencies and other organisations across the small business finance ecosystem to improve access to financial support.

Access to finance is vital for smaller businesses to prosper, and I enjoy enabling businesses in the region access the finance they need to succeed, whatever the stage of their development.

How can the British Business Bank help my business?

The British Business Bank delivers funding through dedicated funds that best meet the needs of the businesses in every region.

Each fund is designed to drive sustainable economic growth by supporting innovation and creating local opportunity for new and growing businesses.

The British Business Bank also increases the supply and diversity of early-stage finance for smaller businesses, providing investments to firms that might otherwise not receive funding and help to break down barriers in access to finance.

For example, the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund provides commercial finance through three types of product funds: microfinance, debt finance and equity finance. These funds provide funding options that are designed to plug common gaps in the provision of finance, giving your business access to the funding it needs to help it grow.

The fund will be renewed, with Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund II aiming to deliver a £1.6 billion commitment of new funding to drive sustainable economic growth.

For startups across the UK, the Start Up Loan offers investment and support for businesses who struggle to access other forms of finance.

With our national network of business support partners based across the country, we help loan applicants prepare their business plans and cash flow forecasts, and our business support partners are responsible for assessing final applications and providing ongoing mentoring support to those people whose applications are successful.

Where can I find out more?

A good place to start exploring your finance options is the British Business Bank’s website, which houses a host of useful content and guides to help you on your journey, like our downloadable ‘Guide to Building Business Resilience’.

The Finance hub is also a great resource and helps you understand the options available for your business. Its interactive finance finder helps you to identify finance for your needs, and the site’s useful content is designed to get your business ready for investors.

The British Business Bank, along with several partners from across the UK, will be hosting Business Finance Week between 6-10 November, with a whole host of nationwide and regional in-person events and webinars, Business Finance Week helps smaller businesses learn about the different finance options available to them to support their individual needs and is a good place to learn more and seek advice.