Finding finance

From grants and loans to crowd funding and extended credit, finance for your business is available in a myriad of forms. But how do you know what type is right for your business? Here are the pros and cons of some of the most popular methods of raising capital to boost business.


Finding Finance


A sum of money given to a business for a specific project or purpose. You can apply from the Government, the European Union, local councils and charities. When applying, you'll be expected to show how you intend to use the money, what benefits your project will deliver, a detailed business plan and full costings.

Bank Loans

A sum of money borrowed for a set period within an agreed repayment schedule. The repayment amount will depend on the size and duration of the loan. Banks normally charge interest on loans, and the terms and costs will vary between providers.


A credit facility agreed with your bank. It allows you to temporarily spend more than you have in your account to cover short-term financing needs. You'll need to agree your overdraft limit with your bank, and you'll usually be charged interest on any money you use.

Investment Finance

Investment finance (also known as equity finance) is a way of raising finance from external investors in return for a share of your business. It's best suited to businesses with fast growth potential, strong management, clear strategies and innovative products and/or services.

Investment finance is available from several sources. Here are three of the most common:


Business angels invest in businesses in exchange for shares of equity. They typically invest between £10,000 and £750,000.


An alternative form of business angel investment. Usually conducted online, it allows a number of investors to pool together smaller amounts of money to help a business reach its target.


A form of private equity investment where a business obtains long-term investment in exchange for a share of its equity. Venture capitalists typically invest in businesses with ambitious but realistic business plans, unique and competitive products and/or services, a high return on investment and experienced management teams.

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For more information on which sources of funding are right for your business and for direct help, get in touch with your local Business Gateway office

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Scottish Loan Scheme

The Scottish Loan Scheme (SLS) can provide loan funding of £250,000 - £2m to growth focused Scottish companies.

Support for innovation, research and development

If you plan to research and develop new products or services, you may be able to get funding for R&D, tax credits or support from the government.

EU Funding

EU Funding can still be accessed by Scottish businesses. Scottish Enterprise works with businesses and partners in a range of European partnership projects.