We have a standalone page focussing on digital support for business please click on the link below. There is a wealth of support that we can refer businesses to, to help you thrive and grow. Digital Support for Businesses
If you would like to know more about any of the organisations or programmes listed below, please contact us and we will provide more information.
LCR Finance Hub
The LCR Finance Hub is a free gateway for SMEs wishing to access external funding, with the aim of making the whole process less confusing.
What does the LCR Finance Hub do?
- As assessment of the SMEs financial position and funding requirements
- Appraisal of the business plan, including help with financial forecasts and other supporting information
- Identification and explanation of the finance products that could help your business
- Coaching and mentoring, helping you to develop your investment proposition and ensuring you are pitch ready
- Introductions to suitable finance providers
- Introductions to other business support and financial service providers
- Support at meeting with lenders and investors
Contact the Finance Hub:
MSIF provides a wide range of funding to businesses across the North West, predominantly in the Liverpool City Region and surrounding areas. Funding is available from as little as £3k right up to £2 million+ for a variety of business needs including start-ups, expansions, acquisitions and management buy outs/buy ins.
Established in 1994, MSIF are a local, independent organisation which is not bound by national policy – all lending decisions are made here in Liverpool. Their experience and knowledge of the unique characteristics of the region means they understand the business community here and don’t conform to a ‘one size fits all’ approach.
MSIF are a not-for-profit organisation; all returns on investment go back into the fund to be re-invested in local businesses.
They work closely with banks and other lenders. Sometimes this is because their customers don’t fit their criteria and they are referred to them to see if they can help, or to put together joint funding packages where one or both parties can’t commit the full amount. They also work with corporate finance advisors, accountants and other professionals to put together investments for their clients.
River Capital are a Liverpool-based fund manager and initially founded to oversee funds on behalf of MSIF. They offer a comprehensive range of offerings including Venture, Private Equity, and Debt products and River Capital is dedicated to meeting the specific needs of local SMEs.
Contact River Capital:
Fair Employment Charter
By joining the Fair Employment Charter you’ll send a strong message to staff, customers, partners and the public that your organisation is committed to the principle of fair employment, and you can also demonstrate key social value actions and commitments which are often necessary when applying for funding and other opportunities to help your organisation grow and develop.
More information on the Fair Employment Charter:
A5 Leaflet Fair Employment Charter
Living Well Sefton
Funding and training opportunities from Living Well Sefton include:
Workplace Wellbeing Grants
SMEs can receive up to £500 to support their colleagues’ wellbeing, whether that’s through developing the breakroom or a team building day. Grants are awarded year round and you can find out more information here:
Make Every Contact Count training
We deliver Make Every Contact Count for anyone working in a public facing role to help them gain the skills and knowledge to deliver ‘Healthy Chats’ and support the health and wellbeing of Sefton residents.
More information and contact Living Well Sefton here:
Active Workforce is Sefton’s health and well being programme for businesses to help their staff to be active and healthy during working hours, and reduce their absence through sickness and poor health.
Contact Active Workforce:
CITB is the Construction Industry Training Board for businesses in the construction sector. CITB aims to to help the construction industry attract talent and to support skills development through various training programmes and funding schemes.
Starting a business
Contact email@example.com for information on starting a business
Skills & Training
Skills Brokerage Service
A team of impartial Skills Brokers can help you to access funding, local grants and government incentive schemes to help up-skill or re-skill your employees. There is also support in recruiting new apprentices as well as identifying apprenticeship routes for existing employees.
Skills Bootcamps for the Workplace provide flexible hands-on courses of up to 16 weeks in duration, which are part of the government’s Levelling Up agenda and Lifetime Skills Guarantee.
The employer liaison team at Sefton@Work can support your business with recruiting staff, this is a free, bespoke service saving you money on agency fees.
Sefton Caring Business Charter
Hosted within Sefton@Work, the Caring Business Charter was set up to raise the aspirations and attainment for looked after children or young people leaving local authority care. The team are looking for employers to sign up to the charter to offer site visits, taster days, work experience, mentoring , jobs or Apprenticeships.
More information on the Caring Business Charter:
Elevate Education Business Partnership (EBP)
Supporting local businesses with staff development, social responsibility, and community connection by linking them with education and young people. Visit Erryn and Tina at their stand, check out last year’s report, and explore exciting opportunities like staff training, Primary and Secondary school sponsorship and volunteering, and the upcoming work experience placements for two Sefton schools.
Contact Elevate EBP:
Sefton Corporate Learning Centre
The Sefton Corporate Learning Centre (SCLC) are based in Ainsdale and easily accessible by road and public transport. They deliver high quality training to individuals working across the public, private, voluntary, community and faith sectors – via face to face, eLearning and virtually at competitive prices.
Contact the SCLC:
Volunteer Centre Sefton
Volunteer Centre Sefton is part of Sefton CVS, connecting those that are looking to volunteer with organisations that need volunteers. They also facilitate employer supporting volunteering throughout the borough.
Contact Volunteer Centre Sefton:
Eco I North West
The Eco-I North West programme supports businesses in the North West develop low carbon innovation and skills, and to support ‘green’ economic growth.
Contact the Eco I North West team:
Eco-I Northwest | Liverpool John Moores University (ljmu.ac.uk)
LCR Graduate Scheme
Connecting local graduate talent with SMEs across the Liverpool City Region
Who’s it for
- Businesses based in one of the 6 boroughs of the Liverpool City Region with less than 250 registered employees
- Businesses willing to extend a permanent offer of employment
- Businesses willing to offer a graduate level role with potential for career progression
Contact the LCR Graduate team:
LCR Grad – LCR Grad Scheme
Low Carbon Eco-Innovatory
Free assistance to help Liverpool City Region SMEs to develop new and improved goods, processes and services through collaborative partnerships
- SMEs creating green goods, processes and services
- SMEs identifying opportunities for low carbon development
Contact the Low Carbon Eco Innovatory team:
Low Carbon Eco-Innovatory | Liverpool John Moores University (ljmu.ac.uk)
Edge Hill – Productivity and Innovation Centre- Innovation Sprint Programme
This is a fully-funded intensive 60 hr programme for established SMEs in the LCR who are looking to scale-up the business. The intervention works 1-2-1 with to develop a strategy to transform you into a high-growth, high-productivity business.
Contact the Innovation Sprint Programme team:
SME Productivity & Innovation Centre – Edge Hill University
Hugh Baird College- Apprenticeship Department
Offers support with growing your talent pool and upskilling your workforce.
Contact the Apprenticeship team:
Apprenticeships | Hugh Baird College
University of Liverpool Management School
The University of Liverpool Management School can help support business via academic research, student placements and leadership and management courses for business leaders. They are delivering the Help to Grow: Management Programme with cohorts starting in September 2023 and March 2024.
More info on the Help to Grow: Management Programme or register a place:
Help to Grow Management – Management School – University of Liverpool
Other programmes and organisations
BIPC (Business & Intellectual Property Centre ) Liverpool City Region
Based in Central Library Liverpool, the BIPC provides information and support to anyone starting or growing a business. They have specialist intellectual property services to help people protect their ideas through trademarks, patents, copyright and so on. The team also run a programme of online and physical workshops, one to one advice sessions. networking and other events to allow entrepreneurs to learn, develop and connect with others. Alongside this there are weekly ‘Entrepreneur in Residence’ clinics held every Thursday afternoon from 1pm-4pm in Central Library.
Contact the BIPC team:
Business and IP Centre National Network | The British Library (bl.uk)
Build a Better business for Manufacturers
Businesses will receive support over a 12 month period, beginning with a diagnostic selection, followed by workshops that cover each course module.
Who’s it for?
- Minimum of 10 employees
- A turnover of £1million – £20m million
- An objective to grow turnover by 20% year on year
- Commitment to invest time and resources to the whole programme
More info on Build a Better Business for Manufacturers:
Build a Better Business for Manufacturers | Growth Platform
Export Support Service
The Export Support Service is a helpline and online service where all UK businesses can get answers to practical questions about exporting to Europe.
The service is a ‘one-stop shop’ and brings together UK government information, making it easier for exporters to access advice and support.
More info on the Export Support Service:
Access international market export support – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
Formulated Materials for Infection Disease Prevention
Technical expertise to eligible companies with technology or products that may have an application in relation to and/or hygiene.
Who’s it for
Companies with technology or products that may have an application in relation to infection and/or hygiene
Formulated Materials for Infectious Disease Prevention | Growth Platform
Health Matters – Liverpool City Region
A £1.9million ERDF programme, connecting Liverpool City Region businesses with world-class health, care, technology and commercial resources.
Who’s it for
Liverpool City Region businesses capable of moving into the health and care sectors
More info on Health Matters:
LCR Health Matters – Free Business Support | Growth Platform
LYVA Labs connects ideas, people, and assets to drive innovation growth across Liverpool City Region. Applying innovation expertise gained during years in industry with blue-chip companies, our fully funded services help businesses explore new opportunities, unlock partnerships, and access resources and investment to develop new products and services.
More info and contact the LYVA Labs team:
LYVA Labs – The Future of Innovation
Innovate UK Edge
Innovate UK EDGE is a key part of the UK innovation agency’s investment in businesses that drive economic growth.
It is a publicly-funded service available to all high potential small to medium sized innovation-led companies, Including Innovate UK grant winners. It provides specialist-led support for high-potential ambitious businesses who would benefit from the objective perspective of a dedicated innovation and growth specialist local to them. Each specialist provides bespoke support to the business, working closely with its leadership, in helping to identify the most productive ways to accelerate growth.
Key priority areas include:
More info and contact the Innovate UK Edge team:
Innovate UK EDGE (ukri.org)
LCR Connect is the new fully fibre digital infrastructure from Southport to Aintree through Bootle to the city centre and across the city region. It’s underpinning some of the City Region’s most exciting businesses, at the heart of growth, investment and innovation.
More info and contact the LCR Connect team:
LCR Connect | Part of the Faster Britain Network
Supporting and enabling manufacturers to drive growth and productivity through the adoption of industrial digitalisation technologies.
This programme is for manufacturers across the North West who are open to embracing new tech for growth.
UK Digital Manufacturing advice & innovation | Made Smarter