26 Feb 2016
Greater financial help is to be offered to small and medium-sized businesses in Scotland under plans to expand the Scottish Investment Bank (SIB).
The move is part of a Scottish Government commitment to build a Business Development Bank and will be backed by £21.5million of funding.
Scottish Enterprise has been asked to prepare a plan for creating the Business Development Bank services by expanding the remit of SIB.
Deputy First Minister John Swinney said:“We made a commitment to improve access to finance for small and medium-sized businesses in Scotland, which have found it more difficult to gain access to funding in recent years.
“Small business is the engine of our economy and it is a national responsibility to try to provide an even playing field to help them grow.
“The challenge we face is how to establish the most appropriate investment approach, given the UK Government accounting arrangements within which we are required to work, and ensure Scotland remains a strong, vibrant, diverse and opportunity-rich economy.
“The priority for Scottish businesses is to ensure we offer as wide a range of help as possible, with targeted approaches to expand access to finance.
“I believe the best approach to creating the Scottish Business Development Bank is to enhance the remit of the Scottish Investment Bank (SIB) and for Scottish Enterprise to offer a wider range of business investment approaches, addressing some of the marketplace gaps to improve the supply of funding.
Ritchie Whyte, a Corporate and Business Advisory Partner at Aberdein Considine, has welcomed the finance package.
"Access to capital is one of the biggest issues faced by small and medium-sized business, so anything which increases the diversity of funding options available to business owners is good news.
"It appears that this money will be aimed at providing support to a broader number and range of businesses, offering and enabling loans, and potentially guarantees, alongside equity products and providing an enhanced financial readiness service."
Aberdein Considine offers a full legal service the small businesses across Scotland. If you would like to speak to Ritchie or a member of the Corporate team, please call 0330 3344 333 or click here.