Future Fund expanded to more businesses

The Government has announced that the Future Fund – the support scheme for early-stage, high-growth firms – will be expanded so that more firms can benefit.

The scheme, which was announced by the Chancellor in April, offers Government loans ranging from £125,000 up to £5 million to high-growth start-ups that can attract equal match funding from private investors.

Under the original terms of the scheme, businesses were required to be UK-based. However, this has proven to be difficult for those that have participated in highly selective accelerator programmes that require them to have parent companies outside the UK.

The change means that businesses that have participated in accelerator programmes, such as TechStars or Y-Combinator, can now access the scheme if they have a parent company outside the UK in circumstances where at least half their employees are UK-based or at least half of revenues are from UK sales.

At the same time, HM Treasury has revealed that more funding has been made available for the scheme than the £250 million originally planned, with a total of around £320 million now invested.

Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, said: “Our start-ups and innovative firms are one of our great economic strengths. As we begin to bounce back from Coronavirus, they will help drive our recovery and create new jobs.

“This change means that those start-ups who have strived to be the very best, and taken opportunities to grow their business, will be able to benefit from our world-leading Future Fund.”

Business Secretary, Alok Sharma, added: “As we restart our economy, it is crucial that our innovators and risk-takers get all the support they need to flourish.

“Our decision to relax this rule recognises the importance of many of the UK’s most cutting-edge start-ups as we bounce back from Coronavirus.”