Derek Shaw, Head of Investment Management at the Scottish Investment Bank, the investment arm of Scottish Enterprise, tells us more.

For many Scottish companies with ambitions to grow their business, one of the things that can hold them back is a lack of knowledge about how to raise funding and where to seek support. That’s where Scottish Enterprise can help. Scotland’s national economic development agency supports businesses with a variety of funding options to help them grow, including grants, loans and equity investments.

What is Scottish Enterprise’s role in helping Scottish companies?

We’re here to encourage and stimulate investment in businesses, and to help companies secure the right type of funding they need to expand, invest, innovate and export. We work with ambitious Scottish businesses who are looking to compete within the global marketplace, providing funding and support throughout their journey.

What funding support is available from Scottish Enterprise?

Scottish Enterprise provides a variety of advice and tangible support, both financial and non-financial, to help companies grow. We have a broad range of funding to support businesses throughout their lifecycle – from start-up, early stage development and growth stages. Equity, loan and grant funding are all available to Scottish companies with big ambitions.

Who is the funding for?

We know that an injection of new funding at the right time can be the catalyst that propels companies to success, but are also aware that sometimes there are reasons why conventional funding routes are not available. We would encourage such companies to talk to us as soon as possible, as we know our funding can make a real difference and be truly transformational. Our funding is very much complementary to the finance that is available from existing sources working with other funders in a flexible manner to support companies to achieve their growth ambitions.

What type of funding is available and for what purpose?

Grants are available for a wide range of purposes, including research & development, job creation and capital expenditure. For example, an R&D grant could enable a business to research an innovative new product or service whilst SE’s Regional Selective Assistance grant can help companies create new jobs in Scotland. A commercial loan could be used to invest in new equipment or expand into new markets, for example. Equity funding, on the other hand, often provides vital capital in the early stages of a high-growth company where alternative sources are not available. Working alongside private-sector investors, we provide patient capital where we can take a long-term view on our investments, thereby seeking to grow and scale companies in the medium-to-longer term.

What makes Scottish Enterprise’s funding support different?

If companies can secure the funding they need from elsewhere, that’s great and we encourage it. Indeed, our advisory support is here to help companies identify and secure funding from existing public and private sector funders. Where, however, there is a gap in a company’s funding package, then we can help. Our funding is often about making a project happen that wouldn’t without Scottish Enterprise’s support, de-risking projects by leveraging our funding to enable companies to carry out research and development, innovate and commercialise new products and processes, and take on new people.

How can companies find out more?

Completing an online enquiry form will lead to a more detailed conversation with a funding adviser to guide you through the process. I would actively encourage ambitious, growth-oriented companies to get in touch today.

Apply for Scottish Enterprise funding today. Visit to find out more and take the first steps to growing your business.