SME Brexit Support Fund open for applications

Small and medium-sized businesses in the UK can now apply for up to £2,000 of government grants to help ease the Brexit transition. News sourced from ThinkSandwell.

There are two types of grants available – grants for training, and grants for professional advice – both being administered by financial firm PwC. Companies can apply for both, up to an overall £2,000 limit. The purpose of the fund is to help small businesses manage the changes to trade rules with the EU that came into force on 1 January 2021.

To be eligible, a company must have an annual turnover of no more than £100 million, and no more than 500 employees. The organisation must be an importer or exporter of goods between the UK and EU countries, or move goods between Great Britain and Northern Ireland. For full eligibility criteria, visit the website.

The grant can be used to pay for training in how to complete customs declarations, manage customs processes, use customs software and systems, and understand new regulations relating to VAT on imports and exports, excise duties and rules of origin. Businesses can also apply for the cost of professional advice on how to meet declaration requirements relating to customs, excise, import VAT or safety and security.

The training or advice must be delivered by an external provider, and the expenditure must be made between 11 February and 31 August 2021. Applications to the fund will close on 30 June 2021, or earlier if all funding is allocated before this date – so don’t delay!

To apply, you will first need to create an account. Once registered, you can then log into the application portal and apply for a grant on the basis of a quote for the expenditure. Once the grant offer is confirmed, you can then go ahead and pay for the training or advice, submitting evidence of payment to receive the money.

More details about every stage of the process are on the website. Think Sandwell urges all eligible businesses in the borough to apply and take advantage of the opportunity get up to speed with Brexit. For details of other potential sources of business finance, visit our Access to Finance page. For help and information relating to Brexit, explore our toolkit.