LOANS worth over £670 million have been given to firms in Coventry and Warwickshire during the pandemic.
Figures from the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP) highlight nearly 17,500 loans have been offered to businesses in the area through the government’s Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) and the Bounce Back Loan Scheme
Figures released by the CWLEP Growth Hub show businesses in Stratford had the highest amount of loans in Coventry and Warwickshire of £107.3 which reached nearly 2,600 companies.
The second highest was 2,140 loans offered to firms in the Coventry South constituency amounting to some £91.7million and 2,075 loans being offered in Warwick and Leamington totalling around £88million.
Loans in Rugby amounted to some £68.4million and £65.6million in Kenilworth and Southam.
CWLEP Hub Growth MD Craig Humphrey said the figures indicated the high level of support businesses had needed throughout the area to survive covid-19: “The package of support from the government has been taken up in the form of CBILS or BBLS by small businesses across our patch who saw their revenue and cash flow severely affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
“The high number of businesses asking for support from the south of our area indicates the need of the culture, tourism, hospitality and leisure sector in Stratford-on-Avon which has been devastated in recent months.
“Providing this level of financial support throughout Coventry and Warwickshire has enabled businesses to carry on trading, look at alternative revenue streams such as switching to online sales and needing to improve their digital infrastructure, or use it for working capital.
“Being able to access finance quickly has been needed by SMEs (small and medium business enterprises) who often don’t have huge cash reserves and had to react to the rapidly-changing financial situation they found themselves in, often by having to close their premises.”
Mr Humphrey also praised local authorities he said ‘swung into action quickly to get the money where it was needed’.
The government has extended the CBILS and BBLS until November 30 with more businesses eligible for the schemes.