Scottish entrepreneurs are set to benefit from a new initiative from the government, after John Swinney announced a Dragons Den-style funding opportunity for new companies.
A share of £1 million is up for grabs, with applicants pitching their ideas in front of Scottish business leaders. Successful applicants will be entitled to up to £50,000 worth of funding.
Applications to take part in the Edge scheme, which stands for ‘Encouraging Dynamic Growth Entrepreneurs, will open next month, (November 2012).
To qualify, any interested parties need to create a sixty second video pitch and a business plan. Applications will be made online, before a shortlisting process commences.
Those taken to the next stage will appear in front of a panel, including entrepreneur and philanthropist Tom Hunter, to secure the funding.
The scheme could provide a welcome boost to start-ups looking for commercial finance in Scotland, who are not finding success in other routes.
Saying that the Scottish government is keen on innovation in both the public and private sectors, the Finance Secretary certainly hopes the Edge fund will boost the economy in the country.
Hunter is confident the scheme will prove successful, saying that it would be a huge boost to Scottish entrepreneurs. He went on to commend Swinney and the Scottish government for recognising that action was needed.
His sentiments were echoed by fellow panellist Willie Haughey, who said that the scheme will increase new business success rates.
Backed by the Royal Bank of Scotland, the fund is jointly being run by Scottish Enterprise and Highlands & Islands Enterprise.