Partners of Locate East Sussex, Let’s Do Business Finance (LDBF), a not-for-profit social enterprise in its 15th year of trading, is celebrating a major milestone after passing the £15m mark for loans provided to multiple local companies under the Government's Start Up Loans scheme.
The entrepreneurs who have taken lending past the £15m mark are Corin and Lesley Jeavons, founders of vegan toffee brand, Jeavons Toffee. The husband and wife team began trading earlier last year, having used the Start Up Loan and other economic development funding sourced by Locate East Sussex to move into Newhaven and launch the world’s first vegan toffee factory, ‘Toffee Towers’.
The support we have received from LDBF and Locate East Sussex has been huge in terms of business growthLesley JeavonsCo-owner of Jeavons Toffee
St Leonards-on-Sea based LDBF, has supported over 3500 entrepreneurs across the South East to access finance over the past 5 years alone. Delivering inclusive economic development with a customer-focused approach, Start Up Loans have helped people to start businesses, increase job opportunities and provide goods and services to the local economy. LDBF also provides investment and growth loans to established businesses looking to finance the next steps to scale-up. Lesley Jeavons said:
The support we have received from LDBF and Locate East Sussex has been huge in terms of business growth. Since the loan, we have been able to make a start on building our very own vegan toffee factory – a dream we’ve had for a long time which is finally starting to become a reality.
Sean Dennis, Managing Director of LDBF, said “As one of the first delivery partners of Start Up Loans in 2012, it is hugely rewarding, having reached this landmark, to reflect on the incredible amount of new entrepreneurship that the scheme has stimulated in the region and the legacy that has already been created.”
“The £15m milestone reflects the success of the Start-Up Loans programme which has enabled us to deliver loans to entrepreneurs across East Sussex, Kent, Sussex and Hampshire together with mentoring and other business support.”
With bank lending to small businesses continuing to fall, thousands are looking for alternative sources of funding to get their business off the ground. These personal loans are a lifeline for small businesses and provide the right support at the right time. It’s a fantastic scheme to be part of.Mike Trotter Head of Lending, LDBF Start Up Loans
Start Up Loans have made a valuable contribution to driving business growth as well as delivering an economic return of up to £53m - this staggering amount has helped to create and safeguard a minimum of 3700 jobs.
Another beneficiary is BBC1 MasterChef semi-finalist Ben Crittenden and his wife Sophie who received a Start-Up Loan to launch Stark restaurant in Broadstairs, Kent. The couple had been working towards obtaining their own restaurant for many years to secure a future for themselves and their two young daughters. Plans are now underway to open their second restaurant this summer.
Mike Trotter, Head of Lending at LDBF Start Up Loans, said “With bank lending to small businesses continuing to fall, thousands are looking for alternative sources of funding to get their business off the ground. These personal loans are a lifeline for small businesses and provide the right support at the right time. It’s a fantastic scheme to be part of.”
Coming soon...stay tuned for our case study on Jeavons Toffee to find out how Locate East Sussex helped them secure economic development funding to move their business to Newhaven, the perfect base to launch the world's first vegan toffee factory!
Locate East Sussex support businesses at all stages of their growth journey with a range of services. We offer expert one-to-one business support, events, location services, access to funding, and much more.