The European Regional Development Fund-supported Manufacturing Growth Programme aims to support small and medium sized organisations in Northamptonshire who are looking to create new products, open up new markets, improve productivity and become more competitive in the next 15 months.


Running up to March 2019, the £9.7m programme will deliver over 3,400 improvement projects and create over 4,000 new jobs across the West Midlands, East Midlands, Yorkshire and South East regions.

Funded by ERDF and delivered by Economic Growth Solutions, the programme has been designed to stimulate the growth of aspiring manufacturing businesses, helping them to identify opportunities for accelerated growth, improvements and team development.

Specialist local Manufacturing Growth Managers, with vast experience of business growth support, are in place to offer a free strategic business review, impartial advice and signposting with the opportunity to access grant funding of up to 35% towards the cost of improvement project requirements (not including training).

The average support-package is expected to comprise of approximately £4,000-worth of assistance, with 35% of this being a grant contribution. Applicants will have four months to complete the support project and claim their grant at the end of the project with proof of expenditure.

What is the grant available for?

The grant is funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) to support the costs of working with an external expert/coach of your choice to implement a pre-agreed Growth/Improvement Action plan.

The scope of the growth/improvement plan will be specific to each applicant’s growth needs and will be agreed in advance with a Manufacturing Growth Manager.

Grants will typically cover:

  • Expert consulting/coaching input – to analyse, recommend and support implementation of a Growth/Improvement Plan
  • Associated other expenditure specifically related to achieving a Growth/ Improvement objective (eg small equipment, preparation for accreditation costs etc)

Percentage of Project Cost

An average project value of £4,000 of support would attract a 35% Grant contribution. Minimum grant applications accepted: £1,000.

Eligibility Criteria

To apply you must be:

  1. an SME as defined by the EU definition. This means your company or group of companies must have:
    a. Fewer than 250 employees
    b. A turnover less than or equal to €50 million OR
    c. A balance sheet total less than or equal to €43 million
  2. A manufacturer, defined as:
    A business that engages in any economic activity directly related to a product or production process they have researched, designed or produced, or otherwise hold core intellectual property in.”
    If you are unsure if you meet this definition, please get in touch with your local MGP team, details below
  3. Able to demonstrate the intention to grow/improve – (through creation of increased turnover, increased jobs and/or introduction of new products/services/processes)

Businesses operating mainly in the following sectors are unfortunately not eligible:

  • Fishery and aquaculture
  • Primary production, processing and marketing of agricultural products
  • Coal, steel and shipbuilding
  • Synthetic fibres

Delivery targets and required outcomes

Grant supported Growth/Improvement projects must be completed, paid and claimed for within four months of grant confirmation.

SME beneficiaries are at liberty to select any consultant/coach of their choice provided they can evidence adherence to EU procurement rules requiring them to invite a quotation for the work and justify value for money in their selection.

For further information and to apply please contact:

Adrian Waters, Manufacturing Growth Manager, Northamptonshire, Essex, Southend and Thurrock
Mobile: 07790 358 557

email: adrian.waters@egs.live



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