The current crisis has no doubt put considerable strain on all businesses, particularly small to medium size businesses. The government keep reviewing the measures to help SME stay afloat and as of this evening have just announced that small firms are to get access to 100% taxpayer-backed loans.
This comes after concerns were raised about slow access to existing finance via the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS). Whilst the introduction of the CBILS was much welcomed, most businesses have experienced long delays to decisions. The banks have come under fire for this and are blaming the heavy workload, need to complete the necessary credit checks, and a shortage of staff amongst other things.
The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, announced this evening that the new government backed scheme would start next week, offering firms loans up to £50,000 within days of applying. The scheme simply requires filling in a two-page self-certification form online, getting rid of the usual red-tape that has caused the delays being complained about. Just as importantly, the loan terms mean that no capital or interest repayments will be due for one year. Instead, the government will pay the interest for the first 12 months.
If you are a sole traders, micro-firms and entrepreneurs and would like more information about this seemingly simple route to access finance to stay afloat, please follow this link for more information.
By Amaka Jackson, Managing Partner