More than 450 jobs have been saved at Coventry and Warwickshire businesses from a Government Covid-19 loan scheme – and other firms have been urged to access the support before it runs out at the end of this month.
The Coventry and Warwickshire Reinvestment Trust (CWRT) has handed out over £4.5 million since June to businesses across the sub-region on behalf of the British Business Bank as part of the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS).
CWRT has collaborated with the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP), Coventry City Council, Warwickshire County Council, Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council, Rugby Borough Council and Warwick District Council to make £6.25 million of investment available to local businesses who are experiencing lost or deferred revenues, leading to disruptions to their cashflow.
They have been supported by the CWLEP Growth Hub, the Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce and the Federation of Small Businesses.
The funding has led to 453 jobs being saved and 56 jobs being created in Coventry and Warwickshire via CBILS which ends on Wednesday, September 30.
Sheridan Sulskis, Executive Director at CWRT, said many businesses had used the CBILS and the Bounce Back Loan Scheme – which ends on November 30 – to invest, grow and create jobs, not just survive.
She said: “I am incredibly proud of how we have come together in these unprecedented times to make sure that our crucial, collaborative interventions can facilitate the survival of local businesses, protect local jobs and, in some cases, create new employment opportunities.
“Together we are helping to create an environment for individuals and businesses to better position themselves to generate opportunities and withstand the impact of economic shocks by becoming more economically resilient.
“We have provided loans to a wide range of micro and SMEs including those in the automotive, manufacturing, retail, wholesale, health and social care, and IT and communications sectors.
“The majority have used the CBILS to ease cashflow problems but there is also quite a lot of optimism in the business community with some using the money to diversify, grow or take on extra staff.
“We want to encourage more businesses to access CBILS before it is too late when it finishes on September 30 particularly with the furlough scheme coming to an end the following month.”
Craig Humphrey, managing director of the CWLEP Growth Hub, said there would be no more funding from the Bounce Back Loan Scheme after November 30 as well so it was vital businesses acted now to make the most of these opportunities.
He said: “The two Government-backed schemes, CBILS and the Bounce Back Loan Scheme, have had a positive economic and social impact in Coventry and Warwickshire despite all the difficulties surrounding the Coronavirus pandemic.
“The response to the CBILS initiative in particular has highlighted that this help was much-needed by SMEs and, as well as helping individual businesses, it has had a major impact on the survival of supply chains.
“The fact that such a wide range of partners across Coventry and Warwickshire have provided funding has proved crucial in providing loans to businesses which we hope more will take advantage of before the deadline of September 30.”