By Andrew Sales, via Wikimedia Commons
Vince Cable cropped
The Business Secretary has launched a new £3 million fund for growing businesses in the Anglia region of the UK.
Vince Cable announced today (April 4th) that the money will go towards helping small to medium-sized enterprises in the Norfolk and Suffolk areas to grow.
Entitled the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership Growing Business Fund, the scheme aims to help companies in emerging sectors - and could benefit firms that are investing in developing or using 3D printing technologies.
Supported by the government's Regional Growth Fund, the initiative is aimed at helping companies that want to expand but have been held back by their lack of funding. It will provide grants of up to 20 per cent between £25,000 and £100,000 to businesses that have an investment shortfall in their plans and are able to create at least one job for every £10,000 provided by the fund.
Mr Cable has been leading developments in industrial strategy, which looks to the future and presents a long-term, whole-of-government approach to supporting British firms.
During his tour of Anglia, he visited local companies with links to two sectors in the coalition's industrial strategy: agricultural technology and aerospace, the latter of which has very close ties with 3D printing and additive manufacturing.
The Secretary of State visited KLM engineering at Norwich Airport and spoke there of the importance of developing engineering skills and the increasing demand for those skills.
Last month, the Conservative-Liberal Democrat Coalition launched the aerospace industrial strategy in partnership with the sector, which is focusing on nurturing skills within the industry.
The strategy also announced the creation of a £2 billion Aerospace Technology Institute, which will allow industry and academic researchers to work on advancing technologies for the next generation of quieter, more efficient aircraft.
Mr Cable stated: "Through programmes like the New Anglia ‘Growing Business Fund’, the government’s Regional Growth Fund has supported around 1,200 small and medium-sized companies across the country, helping them create jobs, increase skills and grow their business."