We have almost reached full capacity for the number of businesses and organisations that we can support with free business advice through our programme. We are therefore closing applications on Friday 26th August at 12 midday.
Creative Industry Finance is designed to assist creative and cultural enterprises in securing the finance and investment they need to successfully develop and grow into sustainable businesses.
The programme offers tailored advice with a focus on supporting businesses through the process of applying to one of our lending partners for a business development loan.
Since launching across England in September 2014, we have supported more than 200 creative enterprises with over 1500 hours of free one-to-one business support, enabling over £350,000 in loan finance to be accessed.
Creative Industry Finance is open to a wide range of creative and cultural businesses. We welcome applications from charities and social enterprises, commercial businesses, as well as sole traders and individual artists.
Find out some of the creative businesses we have supported here
Our programme is not aimed at start up businesses, so you will need to demonstrate that you have been trading for at least eighteen months.
The programme is available to all creative businesses registered and based in England, but you do not need to be a registered business to apply.
We able to offer free business advice to any organisation that applies to our programme as these costs are subsidized through our grant from Arts Council England.
If we have successfully supported an application to the point of securing finance, a commission, which is typically 1% of the business loan value, will be payable to Creative United .
This fee contributes towards the on-going costs of supporting clients over the years ahead, following receipt of funds.
All loans offered under the Creative Industry Finance programme are interest bearing, and will be offered subject to the terms and conditions of the lender involved. Typically, interest rates will be in the region of 10% - 14%, but may be higher or lower dependent on the nature of the application and needs of the borrower.
Loans can be used for any business activity including:
You cannot use the loan to pay off existing debts.
Our lending partners are able to consider applications for loans from as little as £2,500 up to £15m. The type of lending available to a business will be dependent on a number of factors, including the legal status of the business and the reasons they need the loan.
Each applicant will be advised at an early stage in the process what lending options are open to them, including indicative interest rates based on the terms typically offered by our lending partners.
Repayment periods will typically be between 1 and 7 years. Most lenders will expect you to begin monthly repayments immediately following receipt of funds. However, in some cases it may be possible to arrange a short deferment period.
Before being referred to one of our lending partners, we expect our applicants to receive a minimum of three hours of business advice from one of our advisors.
The business advice package offered under our programme is free of charge to your business. However, you will be required to cover the costs of travel to attend meetings with a business advisor.
Our business advice programme is funded by Arts Council England, and is offered free of charge to you.
We have a team of 30 dedicated business advisors across England, who are committed to delivering free business support to your creative business.
Through tailored 1:1 sessions, our business advisors will aim to:
We will try our best to match you with a business advisor within your region. Due to the geographical spread, we are also able to offer telephone or skype calls, as well as face-to-face meetings.
We are committed to providing support to businesses across England. We will be working hard to ensure that information about the Creative Industry Finance programme is disseminated as widely as possible, and hope to encourage a wide range of applications from businesses all over the country.
To assess your application we need to see a business plan, financial statements and forecasts. If you do not have a complete or finished business plan, you can attach a working document.
Your business plan should including the following:
You will also need to upload:
To apply for the programme, your business must be :
We will assess each application against three criteria:
1. Strength of existing business
2. Investment need
3. Impact of investment
If in doubt, give us a call on 0207 759 1114 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are happy to discuss your application, including signposting you to a relevant alternative means of support if your business is not the right fit for this programme.
Applications for the Creative Industry Finance programme are currently closed. Please register your details if you’d like to hear from us regarding free business support in the future.
While we recognize the creative work happening across different sectors, the Creative Industry Finance programme is not able to provide support to following types of business:
Please get in touch if you are unsure. We will always endeavor to signpost you to relevant, alternative support.
If you can't find an answer to your question you can email us, or call on 020 7759 1114.
We have more options on our contact page.