Got a project in mind that could help your business to flourish? Grant funding could help make your plans a reality – and ours couldn’t be any easier to access:

15 minutes to apply

A simple online form to get all of the information we need to check you’re eligible for our grants.

Simple process

We keep the paperwork and fuss to a minimum – and you’ll have a dedicated adviser to guide you through.

Quick turnaround

Once we’ve got everything we need, you could be starting work on your project within two weeks.

What can we fund that would improve your business?

As long as the work involves using external expertise and costs between £2500 & £8000 you could be eligible for a 40% grant (maximum grant of £3,200) towards a wide range of different projects:

Making more sales:

- Marketing strategy

- Web design/development

- Video and animation

- Social media

Reducing costs:

- Management systems

- Product development

- Process improvement

- Quality management

Planning for the future:

- Succession planning

- Business growth planning

- Financial restructuring

- Change management

Eligibility Criteria

If you run a business based in County Durham with plans to grow turnover and/or employ more staff, you may be able to access funding from the North East Business Support Fund. Your business must be trading and classed as an SME - that means it must employ fewer than 250 people and have a turnover of less than €50M.

The following types of businesses are not eligible for ERDF support:

  • Businesses in the following Sectors; Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries and aquaculture, Processing and marketing of agricultural products, Shipbuilding, Primary production, Coal or steel, Synthetic Fibres.
  • Any business who mainly generate their income from commission to providers or offering a brokering service including energy / utility / insurance / mortgage / financial advice.
  • Organisations who generate less than 51%+ of their sales from commercial activity. Any income derived from the donations, grants or Contracts that have not been won via a competitive process are not classed as commercial income. This means that many Charities, CICs, Voluntary organisations and Social Enterprises may not be eligible for support via ERDF.
  • Businesses that deliver Statutory Services such as schools, doctors surgeries and care homes.

Previous funding

As this is an extension to the North East Business Support Fund we cannot provide funding to businesses who have already accessed support from the programme – this includes businesses who have received a full Grant from the North East Business Support Fund between February 2018 and December 2020.

Some other frequently asked questions about the funding

We've worked hard to make the whole NEBSF process as straightforward as possible - we want you to focus on your business and get the help you need with the minimum amount of work.

Step 1 - You'll fill out a simple online application.

Step 2 - When we've confirmed your eligibilty, you'll need to supply a written quote from your chosen provider within two weeks.

Step 3 - One of our advisors will visit, you’ll receive a Funding Contract and the project can start.

Step 4 - Your chosen Service Provider will complete your project.

Step 5 - You’ll pay your Service Provider.

Step 6 - You'll claim your funding from us and review the project.

To be eligible for a Grant, your business must be based in the County Durham Local Authority area - this means you must pay your business rates (or council tax if home based) to Durham County Council.

To check whether your business is eligible, please use this link to confirm that the company’s registered address (or your home address for a sole trader) is in the Durham County Council Local Authority area.

No! The North East Business Support Fund cannot support projects that have already started (or that have been completed) - please do not start your project until you have received your signed contract pack.

Want to talk to us about your project - just call 01670 813322.

Ready to apply?

We like to keep things simple, it should only take about 15 minutes

Go to the application form


Register your business as an NBSL provider and stay up to date with the latest funding information.

If you provide business support services like marketing, business planning, human resources or financial planning find out how you could register with us to offer a grant of up to £3200 to your clients for work that you do for them.

Find out more

Our Programmes

From start up to growth.

Our unique support programmes can provide help no matter what stage your business is at.