Extra £6m for Liverpool city region business loan fund

Launched in January 2020 the Flexible Growth Fund offers loans to Liverpool city region businesses that can raise at least 50% in match funding and is now getting an extra £6m. Tony McDonough reports

Steve Rotheram
Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor, Steve Rotheram. Picture by Tony McDonough


A fund that offers flexible low-interest loans to Liverpool city region businesses that can raise at least 50% in match funding is to get a cash injection worth up to £6m.

Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram established the £20m Flexible Growth Fund in January 2020 to help kickstart local investment. Now the Combined Authority (CA) will pump an extra £4m into the fund with another £2m on hand to meet is demand increases.

The fund has been able to boost growth, including five expansion projects in Sefton, Wirral, Knowsley and Liverpool which used £13.1m of investment to expand, creating a total of 95 new jobs and safeguarding another 89.

This latest extra funding will leverage at least £6m in private sector funding. Mr Rotheram said: “When I launched my £75m Business Growth Package in 2019, it was to try and attract innovative and expanding new businesses to our city region.

“While the pandemic meant that many businesses were preoccupied with survival, we’ve been able to use the fund to attract and grow new businesses alongside the tens of millions of pounds we were able to invest in supporting and protecting the local economy.

“Now, as businesses are beginning to think about the future, we’re investing an additional £6m through the Flexible Growth Fund to help attract and grow new businesses, jobs and investment to our region.”

The fund aims to generate new jobs, enhance productivity, remove obstacles to expansion and enable a new generation of ‘change-makers’ that will set the Liverpool city region up for long-term growth. Loan repayments are channelled back into the fund, providing new loan capital as part of an ‘evergreen’ model of fund recycling.

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