Creative Enterprise invites ambitious screen businesses across England to apply for bespoke funding and support

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Creative Enterprise has today announced the latest round of applications for its screen business growth initiatives in the English regions. Delivered by Creative England, part of Creative UK, Creative Enterprise has been designed by industry leaders and is supported by the BFI with funding from the National Lottery. Each initiative supports ambitious entrepreneurs working in moving image storytelling – spanning film and television, games and technology – helping to maximise their ability to transform and grow their businesses. 

Creative Enterprise launched in 2018 and has since supported over 700 businesses and individuals, including providing over £1m in grants. The programme recently hosted its first in person Showcase Gala, held at the Barbican Conservatory, to celebrate and recognise the many successes of the Creative Enterprise cohorts. Current and former participants and mentors came together to share their experiences of the programme, and were joined by key industry investors keen to learn more about their businesses.  

Five Creative Enterprise initiatives are open for applications from today, all offering ambition screen businesses the opportunity to access connections, training and networks to achieve business growth, increasing the sustainability of the moving image sector in the English regions outside of London. 

 The Evolve programme is designed to prepare high-potential screen businesses to seek investment and growth capital. Over a nine-month period, successful applicants gain direct access to leading industry experts and investors, combining one-to-one mentoring sessions, peer-to-peer group meetings and pitch preparation. The selective programme helps businesses to evaluate their current offering, define their goals and formulate a strategy and approach to successfully engage investors. 

The Female Founders programme offers an in-depth package of support, advice and professional coaching to female business owners, across a period of eight-months. Aiming to help female entrepreneurs working in film, TV, games and tech to build, expand and future-proof their businesses, it provides laser-focused sessions on issues such as business planning, funding, strategy, making the right hires and monetising IP. 

The Games Scale Up  programme has been developed in partnership between Creative England and games trade body Ukie, to support games developers, publishers and support services with the potential and ambition to grow. Cohorts of between 10-15 diverse games businesses gain expert industry advice and networking opportunities, including investor introductions, and learn to create and begin the implementation of a comprehensive plan to scale their businesses.

The New Ideas Fund offers grants to creative practitioners and companies working in moving image. With grants of between £1,000 and £25,000 available, recipients can develop innovative ideas and technology, to better position them for future growth. Alongside this, Business Planning Support  offer grants of up to £5,000 to support companies with the creation and implementation of business proposals and strategies. These funds are intended to subsidise the cost of acquiring the specialist expertise, knowledge and contacts needed to refine a robust and effective three-year business plan. 

 All five initiatives are open to entrepreneurs and SMEs in the screen and moving image sector who are based in the English regions, outside of London. Applicants must be working in – or developing a business in – moving image for storytelling, where the content’s primary aim is for entertainment. This includes those working in film, TV, animation, games and immersive media, tech platforms with a narrative focus, and where the content is consumed on screen. 

Mehjabeen Patrick, Chief Investment Officer, Creative UK, said:  

“The recent Creative Enterprise Showcase Gala provided a wonderful moment to reflect on the many successes of the programme and its participants. It also provided a timely reminder of the vitally important role support initiatives such as ours play in growing and sustaining the UK’s world-leading screen sector. Film, TV, video games and tech are all flourishing industries, but it is crucial that talented individuals and businesses of all backgrounds can benefit from this success.  

“Creative Enterprise gives aspiring businesses the tools and training they need to unlock their potential and realise their ambition. Learning from peers, as well as expert industry-leading mentors, enables creative entrepreneurs to refine their business plans and IP, taking important steps towards securing future investment and growth. 

 “I encourage all ambitions screen business to apply for the transformational opportunities Creative Enterprise has to offer.”  

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