Stockport businesses and voluntary organisations are invited to take part in a new ‘Stockport Business Challenge Fund’ to help bring economic benefits to the borough.
The Fund is unusual as it’s allocated through a competitive bidding process, culminating in a voting event on 26th June when projects will be scored by members of the business community.
The fund – created by Stockport Council – is overseen by Stockport Economic Alliance which comprises the Council and major local employers including MAN Diesel and Turbo, adidas, BT, and Jacobs Engineering. The aim is to help local businesses, groups of businesses and voluntary organisations with funding for projects which show that they benefit the Stockport’s economy.
Bids will be accepted for revenue funding of between £2,000 and £25,000 and capital funding of between £5,000 and £30,000.
The main criteria are that the funded project should have a positive impact on the local economy, should show exceptional value for money, and should have a clear plan for delivering the project with specific outputs and outcomes.
Up to £330,000 will be allocated at the voting event. Shortlisted businesses will have three minutes to make presentations to their peers in the business community who will then vote electronically for those bids which have the greatest economic impact, can be delivered, and will provide value for money.
Paul Lawrence, Service Director of Place Development at the Council, said: “This is an excellent new initiative, aimed at inspiring local businesses to get involved in activity that will benefit the local economy. The voting event in June will be a great opportunity for businesses to come together, showing their support for innovative projects and taking a role in determining how the fund should be allocated.”
Wayne Jones, Senior Vice President of MAN Prime Serve and Chair of Stockport Economic Alliance, added: “I am thrilled and excited about this new funding opportunity. We’re particularly looking for projects with wow appeal and a real understanding of the needs of Stockport’s economy.”
Full details, application forms and guidelines are available on the Council website www.stockport.gov.uk/businesschallenge The deadline for all applications is 12 noon on Tuesday 8th May.
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