New NI Small Business Loan Fund opens to businesses with increased lending

Sep 25, 2018
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Pictured (L-R) are William McCulla, Corporate Finance Director, Invest NI, David Jameson, Commercial Director, Iota, John Jameson, Managing Director, Iota and Harry McDaid, CEO, UCIT.

The new NI Small Business Loan Fund will provide access to finance for small businesses, sole traders and partnerships keen to develop their businesses. It will provide loans of up to £100,000.

Ulster Community Finance Ltd (UCF) has been appointed manager of the new fund.

Since it launched in 2013, the Fund has supported almost 400 local businesses by providing over £7.5 million in loans. The new NI Small Business Loan Fund will continue this success, providing much needed finance to businesses that find it difficult to access funding through traditional sources. With an increased loan level of £100,000 the new Fund has the potential to lend over £8million to local SMEs, helping them to invest, grow and create jobs.

William McCulla, Director of Corporate Finance, Invest NI.

Making the announcement, William McCulla, Invest Northern Ireland’s Director of Corporate Finance said: “The first Small Business Loan Fund made a significant contribution to small businesses in Northern Ireland, ensuring SMEs could access the type of finance needed to support their growth. Since it launched in 2013, the Fund has supported almost 400 local businesses by providing over £7.5 million in loans.

“The new NI Small Business Loan Fund will continue this success, providing much needed finance to businesses that find it difficult to access funding through traditional sources. With an increased loan level of £100,000 the new Fund has the potential to lend over £8million to local SMEs, helping them to invest, grow and create jobs.’

Start-up enterprises can obtain initial loans of up to £15,000.

I would encourage small businesses with a legitimate funding need to get in touch to see how we can support their ambitious business plans.

Harry McDaid, CEO, UCF.

Harry McDaid, UCFs CEO said: “We are delighted to be appointed as managers of the second Small Business Loan Fund. The first Fund supported a wide range of businesses across Northern Ireland, providing scope for capital investment, new product development and geographic expansion. In the process, jobs were created and employment protected.

“Companies such as Portadown based Iota used the fund to develop and manufacture its innovative negative pressure unit, aimed at contractors operating within the asbestos removal industry. The company is currently working to generate sales in Canada, New Zealand and Europe.

“Belfast based gym equipment manufacturer, Blk Box used their loan to create new jobs and expand from operating out of a garage to doing business on a global stage from its new headquarters in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter.’

“I would encourage small businesses with a legitimate funding need to get in touch to see how we can support their ambitious business plans.’

The Fund is part of Invest Northern Ireland’s Access to Finance Portfolio and is delivered in partnership with Enterprise Northern Ireland.

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