It has been a few days since I last gave an update on government announcements and guidance. In the last few days there have been two main financial updates for businesses.
The first of these is that the Future Fund which was announced a month ago will go live on 20 May 2020. Although we consider this is likely to be of little benefit to many company’s due to the requirement to have other investors in place, for those considering claiming details of how to apply can be found here.
Secondly, for those employers who have been waiting since 13 March 2020 to make a claim for Statutory Sick Pay paid for the first 2 weeks of sick leave due to Covid-19 HMRC have now confirmed that the claim portal will go live on 26 May 2020. We would suggest making sure, if you are looking to make a claim, that you have all the details needed to make a claim ahead of the go live date. Full details of what you need to make a claim can be found here. Thankfully the indication is this portal can be used by Agents, like the CJRS portal.
Finally, as an indication of the level of support that has been provided and the relative merits of success of each scheme HM Treasury have released a summary of the amount of loans provided to businesses in the three main financial support packages (BBLS, CBILS and CLBILS). Details can be found here.
As of the 17 May 2020 loans totalling £22.02bn had been made. Interestingly looking at the split the last scheme to be announced, BBLS, accounts for 64.4% of approved loans, being £14.18bn. Another striking analysis is that 80% of BBLS applications have been approved, compared to only 50% under CBILS. Our understanding of the reasons for this is the much simpler application process for BBLS.
What this shows is that for those smaller businesses if you are looking for finance below £50,000 then the BBLS is a very useful scheme to fall back and is well worth considering to help with short-term cash flow issues given its very favourable terms.
If your bank were also not initially within the BBLS then it is worth checking again as the number of approved lenders continues to grow and currently stands at 17.
We are here to support you during these unprecedented times. If you have any queries or need any advice, please do not hesitate to contact me or your local Thomas Westcott representative.
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