Small Businesses: Coronavirus:Written question - 68666

Q
(Preston)
Asked on: 03 July 2020
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Small Businesses: Coronavirus
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans his Department has to provide additional funding for schemes to support business affected by covid-19 that are owned by (a) minorities and (b) women.
A
Answered by: Paul Scully
Answered on: 13 July 2020

The Government is committed to ensuring people from all backgrounds and regions benefit from the Government’s access to finance schemes. A diverse and inclusive ecosystem is good for entrepreneurs, companies, investors, and society as a whole.

The Department’s Ministerial team is also actively engaging with the Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) business community on a regular basis to cover multiple issues, including access to finance.

The Future Fund provides government co-investment to innovative businesses. As of 5 July, 376 convertible loans worth a total of £380 million have been approved under the scheme. The British Business Bank (BBB) published diversity data for the Future Fund on 23 June 2020, which showed that companies with BAME-only and mixed ethnicity management teams accounted for over 55% of applications, valued at £118.5m, and that 79% of funding had been issued to companies with mixed gender management teams.

The Future Fund is also a signatory of the Investing in Women Code and encourages co-investors to do the same.

The British Business Bank’s Start Up Loans programme had delivered more than 73,600 loans to entrepreneurs by the end of May 2020, providing more than £609 million of funding. Of these, 40 per cent of these loans have gone to women, and 25 per cent of the total were to applicants from a BAME background.

The Government’s loan schemes to support businesses affected by Covid-19, including the Bounce Back Loan schemes, are open to all businesses which meet the eligibility criteria, including those owned by women as well as those owned by people from a BAME background. We will monitor the implementation and take up of the schemes.

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