Main Street Wednesday — What’s Happening Across the Pond

January 28, 2015

By Bob Coleman
Editor, Main Street Wednesday

It’s been a while since I’ve covered the UK’s small business microlending program — the start up loan scheme.

Don’t you just love how the Brits use the word scheme!

Anyway, the government funded program has backed 25,332 small businesses for over £130 million, or US$200 million.

The UK uses 55 delivery partners, similar to US small business development centers to mentor applicants and fund loans.

The average loan size is £5,000. Loans are amortized for up to five years. The interest rate is 6%.

Reports, Prime Minister David Cameron says that supporting small businesses in getting off the ground is a key part of the government’s long-term economic plan.

‘That’s what our Start Up Loans are all about – it’s great news that 25,000 loans have now been issued, giving people who want to work hard and get on the tools and confidence to turn their entrepreneurial vision into a reality,’ he adds.

Business Secretary Vince Cable says, ‘Helping businesses to access the funds they need to grow is key to our recovery and through schemes like Start Up Loans the government is supporting serious volumes of lending to small and medium-sized businesses.’