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New Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme open to UK SMEs

NEWS: CBILS open to SPRINT SMEs

British Business Bank offers new Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme to support UK SMEs

Many of the SPRINT projects taking place in collaboration with our partner universities across the UK involve businesses from the SME (small to medium-sized enterprise) sector.

SPRINT recognises the challenges that SMEs are currently facing in these times of coronavirus prevention and would like to bring to your attention a new Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS).

Announced by the Chancellor at Budget 2020, CBILS is open for applications and can provide facilities of up to £5m for smaller businesses across the UK who are experiencing lost or deferred revenues, leading to disruptions to their cashflow.

Delivered by the British Business Bank through 40+ accredited lenders and partners, the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme will support the continued provision of finance to UK smaller businesses (SMEs) during the Covid-19 outbreak.

Although the Budget announced that an initial £1.2bn of government-backed lending would be available through the new scheme, the government has since announced that it will be demand-led and will be resourced accordingly.

Scheme features

The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme supports a wide range of business finance products, including term loans, overdrafts, invoice finance and asset finance facilities.
• Up to £5m facility: The maximum value of a facility provided under the scheme will be £5m, available on repayment terms of up to six years.
• 80% guarantee: The scheme provides the lender with a government-backed, partial guarantee (80%) against the outstanding facility balance, subject to an overall cap per lender.
• No guarantee fee for SMEs to access the scheme: No fee for smaller businesses. Lenders will pay a fee to access the scheme.
• Security: At the discretion of the lender, the scheme may be used for unsecured
• lending for facilities of £250,000 and under. For facilities above £250,000, the lender must establish a lack or absence of security prior to businesses using CBILS. If the lender can offer finance on normal commercial terms without the need to make use of the scheme, they will do so.
• The borrower always remains 100% liable for the debt.

Eligibility criteria

Smaller businesses from all sectors can apply for the full amount of the facility. To be eligible for a facility under CBILS, an SME must:
• Be UK based in its business activity, with turnover of no more than £45m per year
• Have a borrowing proposal which, were it not for the current pandemic, would be considered viable by the lender, and for which the lender believes the provision of finance will enable the business to trade out of any short-to-medium term difficulty.

If the lender can offer finance on normal commercial terms without the need to make use of the scheme, they will do so.

How to apply

CBILS is available through the British Business Bank’s 40+ accredited lenders and partners, which are listed on the British Business Bank website.

In the first instance, businesses should approach their own provider – ideally via the lender’s website. They may also consider approaching other lenders if they are unable to access the finance they need.

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