RBS investing in Scotland’s enterprise ‘eco-system’


RBS investing in Scotland’s enterprise ‘eco-system’

Today the Royal Bank of Scotland has announced a £2.5m investment in a new fund aimed at supporting Scotland’s entrepreneurs.

The 2014 Scottish EDGE fund finalists celebrate their success.

Hundreds more entrepreneurs and small businesses are set to get a boost to their business plans through this investment which will be added to the £0.7m investment from The Hunter Foundation and the £2.35m already committed by the Scottish Government.

The new fund, name still to be revealed, sees the current Edge fund (scotedge.com) entering a new phase. Styled as a Dragon’s Den competition for ambitious entrepreneurs, scotedge.com was established to support some of Scotland’s brightest new businesses to realise their growth potential. So far 69 businesses have secured funding helping their turnover grow by £5m and creating 120 new jobs.

The cumulative £5.5m will be managed by a new charity – enabling additional fundraising – with an independent board of Trustees. Scotedge.com will immediately convert the current pure prize award into a 50/50 loan and prize combination which will help look beyond the current 2017 timeline.

Applications are now live at scotedge.com for the next round of funding and will close on 1st October. Further details will be available at www.scotedge.com from 20th August.

As well as this additional funding, through strategic partnerships across a number of entrepreneurial support bodies, recipients of scotedge.com will benefit from a range of extended support services, participate in a leadership education programme and become part of a Scottish entrepreneurial alumni initiative. Any business that doesn’t qualify for financial support will in turn be supported to further develop their business with a view to reapplying for scotedge.com.

Ross McEwan, Royal Bank of Scotland chief executive said;

“It is the drive and dynamism of Scotland’s entrepreneurs and small businesses that will help secure Scotland’s future economic prosperity. 

“That is why as Scotland’s leading business bank we are delighted to announce this further support. The fund is a brilliant example of collaboration, bringing together some of the key players in the business community to help kick start some of Scotland’s most exciting, new growth businesses. 

Finance Secretary John Swinney said;

“In 2012 the Scottish Government acted on this and established the Scottish EDGE fund to further our unique heritage of entrepreneurship, inventiveness and innovation. Thanks to support from Sir Tom Hunter and from Ross McEwan at RBS, I am delighted that the EDGE fund will continue until 2017 with enhanced investment.

“The EDGE fund is a first rate example of our Scotland CAN DO commitment to becoming a world-leading entrepreneurial and innovative nation. Through our work with public, private and third sector partners we have created a real team Scotland approach, with a shared ambition of a continuing entrepreneurial revival.”

Sir Tom Hunter, chairman of THF noted;

“Building growth companies in Scotland is fundamental to our economic and social future. This development neatly converts a government led initiative to a private sector led programme of support, if you will ‘for entrepreneurs by entrepreneurs’ and cements an excellent public private partnership. If one word summed up scotedge.com its ambition - we need to stretch our businesses, aim for high growth and internationalization; Scotland leading the world and that’s where we should be.”

 

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