Start Up Loans hits £1bn milestone with £80m to the West Midlands
Start Up Loans, part of the British Business Bank, has delivered more than £1bn of loans across the UK since its inception in 2012.
The loans have been issued to 105,109 businesses, at an average of £9,547 per business.
Of those loans, the West Midlands has received more than £80m, in 8,670 loans across the region. The average loan amount in the West Midlands is £9,407.
The Start Up Loans programme provides a means of reaching under-represented groups who are excluded from mainstream finance by helping them start businesses.
Of the £80m in the West Midlands, £30m (38%) has been lent to female business owners and £20m (25%) has been lent to people from Black, Asian and Other Ethnic Minority backgrounds (not including White Minorities).
Just 4% of the UK’s small businesses in 2021 were majority-led by people from an ethnic minority group and only 20% of new businesses had female founders according to The Rose Review. The Start Up Loans programme provides a means of reaching under-represented groups who are excluded from mainstream finance by helping them start businesses.
Young people in the West Midlands between 18-24 years old have received £10.3m (13%) of loans since the programme began.
In the West Midlands, the county with the most loans was West Midlands County with 4,643 loans valued at more than £40m. In second place was Staffordshire with 1,473 loans totalling more than £14m.
One recent Start Up Loans recipient is Lifted Drinks which took out a loan of £25,000 in May 2023.
Lifted Drinks, based in Staffordshire, creates an alcohol-free beer that offers the taste of the beverage while incorporating the post-workout benefits of a protein shake. Combining the two worlds it has introduced a new type of product to the market, harvesting a unique consumer base in the process.
Rebecca Robinson, founder of Lifted Drinks, said: “The Start Up Loans programme has helped us achieve what we saw as a gap in the market targeting those who want to be social and are also fitness enthusiasts. With the loan we received back in May of this year we have been able to take our product and business to the next level.”
Sophie Dale-Black, UK Network Director for the Midlands, British Business Bank said: “Lifted Drinks is a great example of a young business identifying a gap in the market and capitalising on it. The British Business Bank is proud to champion and benefit innovation from the West Midlands region that has a global outlook and a strong scope to scale the business making a national impact.”
Small Business Minister Kevin Hollinrake said: “Across the UK, thousands of small businesses have now been supported by over a billion pounds in Start Up Loans. This crucial support is enabling enterprising companies like Lifted Drinks start and scale up their ventures and I urge even more to follow in their footsteps.”