Date: 24th September 2018
Businesses looking to invest in digital technology can sometimes be put off by the perceived cost, however with Digital Enterprise’s help, improving your digital capabilities can be as cheap as ‘micro’ chips. Let us help you turn your digital dreams into reality.
On Monday 1st October, Digital Enterprise will launch phase four of its immensely popular Digital Growth Voucher scheme, which aims to help SME businesses in the Leeds City Region grow by providing up to £10,000 of funding for new digital technology.
For the latest phase, we have made a number of changes to the scheme, providing even more businesses with the chance to take advantage of the funding.
Under phase four, the total value of a digital project has been increased to up to £12,000. For the first time, businesses which have received Digital Growth Voucher funding in a previous phase and have completed their project, and participants in our Digital Knowledge Exchange, can now apply (limited number of vouchers available to these groups).
The Digital Growth Voucher scheme provides funding of between £2,000 and £10,000 towards new IT hardware and software, or to upgrade broadband connectivity. The value of the digital transformation project must be between £4,000 and £12,000. Applications will be evaluated and businesses that demonstrate a greater need for upgraded digital technology or the biggest potential for growth, will be given priority.
Digital Growth Vouchers can be used to fund at least 50 per cent of the cost of new technology, and sometime more – depending upon the degree of digital transformation, economic impact and business performance improvements.
Digital Growth Vouchers are available to firms that are trading in a business to business (B2B) environment rather than direct to consumers, employ between two and 250 people, and have a turnover of no more than €50 million (approximately £43 million). Businesses must also be based in one of the nine Leeds city region areas of Leeds, Bradford, York, Wakefield, Harrogate, Calderdale, Selby and Craven.
The application process can take around 10-12 weeks to complete and requires three quotes for the work a business wishes to undertake. Businesses are urged to source quotes at the earliest opportunity as this will speed up the process, and allow those that are successful in acquiring funding to start their project sooner.
Since its launch in 2016, over 1,000 businesses have applied for Digital Growth Voucher funding. Digital Enterprise has provided over £2.6 million for digital projects, and the investment is set to deliver a boost of over £6 million to the regional economy and generate over 1,500 jobs. With over £1 million of funding available as part of phase four, hundreds of businesses are once again set to benefit.
Digital Enterprise programme manager, Muz Mumtaz, said: “Businesses across the Leeds City Region are embracing the concept of digital transformation. They are aware that a small investment can have a dramatic impact on their future success – helping them to grow and increase their profitability. We are delighted to be in a position to help them to succeed by providing funding for their digital projects.
“Our Digital Growth Vouchers can be used in a variety of ways – for instance, to help purchase new hardware or software, to develop better websites, improve telephony or upgrade broadband connections.
“For the latest phase we are delighted to be able to open the scheme to businesses who have previously received funding or who participate in our Digital Knowledge Exchange. However, the number of vouchers available to this group are limited and we would encourage anyone who is interested in taking advantage of our scheme to apply as soon as possible.
“Over the last two years we have helped hundreds of businesses to develop their digital capabilities – perhaps we can help you too?”
The latest phase of the Digital Growth Voucher scheme will open for six weeks and businesses will have until Friday 9 November to apply for funding.
From Monday 1 October, businesses can check their eligibility for the new Digital Growth Vouchers and apply by clicking on the ‘Check Eligibility’ button at www.digitalenterprise.co.uk/vouchers