Digital Boost Grant - Terms & Conditions
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Terms & Conditions

1. Grant Terms and Conditions

a). Grants will be offered on a 50/50 basis. The minimum grant you can apply for is £2,500 and the maximum grant is £20,000 (for VAT registered businesses) or £5,000 (for non-VAT registered businesses). Successful applicants will be required to demonstrate they have contributed at least 50% of the costs of the project involved before the grant is disbursed.

For VAT registered businesses, all VAT costs are excluded from the grant sum awarded.

b). The grant excludes any costs incurred or committed to (e.g., ordered) prior to an offer of grant being issued, accepted in writing, and received by the grant support team.

Any costs incurred or committed to (e.g., ordered) prior to an offer of grant being issued, accepted in writing, and received by the grant support team are excluded.

c). Valid applications will be authorised in chronological order. Applications received after the available budget has been exhausted cannot be approved. The closing date for all applications is 5th October 2021, although the scheme may close before then if funds have been exhausted.

d). Only items specified in an offer of grant letter can be claimed. No costs incurred or paid after 21st December 2021 will be eligible for claim.

e). Businesses will have 8 weeks from confirmation of authorisation to claim their grant unless an exception has been agreed prior with LESL.

f) Payment of the grant will be made only on submission of proof of eligible expenditure. Proof of payment must be provided as follows:

- Original or electronic paid receipts or invoices for each item being claimed, and

- Original bank/credit card statements or copies of online bank/credit card statements showing account name, number, and sort code, and payment of invoices/receipts for each item being claimed.

Original receipts, invoices, and bank statements will be stamped and returned to you.

g). No cash payments can be claimed, and handwritten invoices or receipts will not be accepted.

h). In instances where a credit card has been used, bank statement(s) showing payment(s) toward the credit card balance covering at least the cost of the item(s) being claimed must be submitted. Note the full outstanding credit card balance does not need to be cleared.

i). Payment will be within ten working days after verification of all submitted documents.

j). The grant can only be used to improve the digital capability or capacity of your business, or the skills of your employees. Your application must clearly identify all the items towards which you intend to use the grant. Eligibility will be confirmed during the application process.

k). You will be asked to show evidence of your financial contribution to the project specified in the funding section of the application.

l). Eligible purpose(s) of the grant-funded project include:

- Reducing (non-staff) operational costs

- Improving market share

- Enabling employment to be safeguarded or increased. This does not include equipment for employees not yet employed

- Increasing revenues

- Increasing profit margin

- Improving cyber security

- Moving business online

- Eligible expenditure is to introduce new digital capabilities to your business:

- Enhancing digital skills of workforce

- Buying software

- Buying IT, or digital communications, hardware

- Building an online booking/ticketing system

- Building an Ecommerce website

- Developing an app

- Digital Consultancy costs

- Software or hardware rental (first year costs only)

- Building or maintaining websites that are brochures or provide information

- Ongoing annual charges for platforms, hosting or online content management     (first year costs only)

n). Ineligible expenditure (for the grant element of the project) includes:

- Digital marketing.

- Marketing: attending trade fairs, PR & marketing activity, and branding.

- Initiatives to reduce employment in the business.

- Statutory costs, property development, and the purchase of stock.

- Software or hardware rental costs beyond the first year.

- Existing and/or ongoing annual charges for platforms, hosting, or online content management.

- Gaining quality accreditation.

- Building improvements, groundworks, fixtures, and fittings.

o). All grant recipients must undertake the Cyber Essentials Pre-Assessment via the Scottish Business Resilience Centre (SBRC) and complete all associated training within three months of receiving the grant. Evidence of completion of the Pre-assessment and training must be obtained from SBRC.

2. Eligibility Criteria

a).  The applicant business must be operating from within Scotland, and must be a registered limited company, or registered with HMRC with a unique tax reference (UTR) if a sole trader.

b). Registered charities and third sector organisations based in Scotland may apply, subject to all other eligibility criteria.

c). Businesses can apply for support only where they can evidence that they have been actively trading (i.e., receiving sales income) for at least six months.

d). Social enterprises may apply, subject to all other eligibility criteria.

e). Turnover must be based on earned income (trading or service level agreements), excluding grant income or funding from a parent organisation, evidenced by accounts and 6 months bank statements.

f). Franchise businesses must be ethical franchises and accredited by the British Franchise Association.

g). Applicants must disclose all other sources of grant funding being applied for or received within the last three years.

h). The grant must be used to pay for all, or part, of the approved costs detailed within the grant award.

i). The individual applying must be over the age of 18.

j). The individual applying must be a UK resident with the right to work in the UK. Evidence may be required, for example a passport or letter from the Home Office.

k) The grant will be made to “the business”, not an individual. Consequently, receipt of the grant should be visible in the business accounts and included when applicants are checking compliance with Subsidy Control requirements. Where there is more than one owner of the business (for example in a partnership, limited liability partnership, or limited company) only one individual can apply. Details of all the other individuals owning a part of the business must be disclosed. For sole trading partnerships all partner details must be disclosed.

l). Businesses must meet the European definition of an SME* in relation to employees, balance sheet, and turnover. 

*European Definition The category of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) is made up of enterprises which employ fewer than 250 persons and which have an annual turnover not exceeding 50 million euro, and/or an annual balance sheet total not exceeding 43 million euro

m). Certain business types are not eligible to apply for the grant, including those involved in: the sex industry; politics; religion; nude or semi-nude modelling or photography; multi-level marketing/pyramid selling or any business that may bring Scottish Government into disrepute. Organisations with restricted membership are not eligible.

n). Projects eligible for full funding through other public bodies are excluded.

o). Individuals with bankruptcy proceedings, undischarged or pending, against them are ineligible to apply.

p). By accepting a grant offer, you further agree to provide LESL with updates on progress towards your development plan objectives as requested, and any further support requirements.

q). The receiving business must remain trading and based in Scotland for at least 12 months from the date of receipt of any grant. We reserve the right to recover the grant amount if any conditions are broken, or trading ceases within 12 months of receiving the grant.

r). Eligible businesses that are not VAT registered can apply for a minimum grant of £2,500 and a maximum grant of £5,000.

s). Eligible businesses that are VAT registered will be able to apply for a minimum grant of £2,500 and a maximum grant of £20,000.

t). The business must not have been a previous recipient of the DigitalBoost Grant.

u). All businesses must complete the Digital Integration Plan stage within the application portal prior to submitting their application.

v). LESL reserves the right to reject a grant application based on the criteria and eligibility outlined already.

If your application has been rejected and you would like to appeal, you can use this link to complete the Appeal’s Form and submit to the Appeals’ Panel. PLEASE NOTE: you must submit your appeal within 5 working days of receipt of the grant award email advising you of the grant decision. The Appeals Panel decision is final and subsequent appeals will not be considered.

We will then confirm receipt of your appeal and aim to reassess your application within 5 working days. We may contact you within this time to discuss further. Subsequently you will be notified by email on the outcome of your appeal. 

If the original decision is overturned, your application will be processed as normal and then subject to you providing proof of expenditure, the funds will be transferred to you. 

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