PRZOOM - /newswire/ -
Aston Science Park, Birmingham, United Kingdom, 2007/08/30 - Businesses in the West Midlands that were physically affected or have lost significant levels of trade as a direct result of floods during the summer are being offer the chance to tap into an initial £2 million loan fund announced today.
Since the flooding in June and July, Business Link West Midlands has been working with a team of more than 40 advisers to support companies across the region which have been affected by the floods.
The Flood Recovery Loan funded by Advantage West Midlands (advantagewm.co.uk) will be available to companies who have developed recovery plans with Business Link West Midlands but have been unable to get all of the finance they need from their own and mainstream commercial sources to implement them.
In these circumstances, loans of up to £20,000 over two years can be applied for, which will be interest free for the first year with no repayments for the first six months.
Companies who have been affected should continue to use Business Link West Midlands as their first point of contact by calling 0845 113 1234 and, where appropriate, they will arrange a visit from an adviser.
Mark Pearce, Advantage West Midlands Corporate Director for Economic Regeneration, said: “Many of the companies in the West Midlands that were affected during the floods have spent weeks getting themselves back on their feet.
“Business Link West Midlands has done an excellent job in helping them with recovery plans and within days of the floods were proactively approaching companies to offer their assistance.
“It has become clear that some of the companies physically affected in terms of loss of stock, structural damage or repair are having difficulties in completely covering the costs through normal channels.
“This is why we have moved to set up this loan fund, to give companies who have been hardest hit the chance to get fully operational again and some breathing space to allow them to get their businesses profitable again.
“Our target will be to get money to affected companies within two weeks of them seeing a Business Link West Midlands advisor.”
Lorraine Holmes, Chief Executive of Business Link West Midlands, said: “We have about 100 advisers currently working with flood affected companies on their recovery plans and this new fund will make a major difference in helping businesses get back on their feet again.
“The resilience of these firms has been amazing to see and, when combined with the right impartial advice, expertise and speed of support, we are confident that the majority of these companies will bounce back stronger than ever before.”