After struggling to secure funding for his start-up company, Gregor turned to Scotland’s foremost start-up business competition, the Scottish EDGE, which recently announced the launch of Young EDGE Loans, a new source of funding for Scotland’s youngest entrepreneurs and their start-up businesses. Offering loans of between £2,500 and £25,000, Young EDGE Loans is the Scottish EDGE’s first offering to use an application structure rather than a competition structure, and aims to fill the funding gap left by the closure of the Prince’s Trust’s Growth Fund in 2015.
The first recipient of a Young EDGE Loan, Gregor spoke of the challenges he faced in obtaining funding and the support the Scottish EDGE had given him: “There are limited lending options from banks in Scotland for very small businesses, even if you have ambitious growth plans, and if you’re under twenty-five or not involved in the technology industry you will struggle to receive awards or loans from third parties. Young EDGE Loans are one of the only places a young entrepreneur can go to obtain funding or support. The support the team at the Scottish EDGE provide is exceptional - there is a genuine warmth and want for people and individuals to succeed.” Hannah Whisky Merchants received a loan of £20,000 which will be used to finish the company’s single malt bourbon casks with sherry and other styles to create very unique flavours, alongside other capital expenditure projects.
Open to limited companies who have been trading for more than a year and whose directors are aged eighteen to thirty, Young EDGE Loans are funded by the Hunter Foundation and Royal Bank of Scotland. Head of Entrepreneurship at the Royal Bank of Scotland and Scottish EDGE Board Member, Gordon Merrylees, noted the importance of supporting Scotland’s young entrepreneurs’ throughout their business’ development; “Here at the Royal Bank of Scotland, we’re delighted to support Young EDGE Loans, continuing our successful relationship with Scottish EDGE. We believe that the support offered by Scottish EDGE and their partner organisations has the potential to transform the success of small businesses and look forward to seeing Gregor’s business, and those of other applicants, achieve their growth ambitions in the years ahead.”
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