“For many years I have campaigned for more focus on small business and start ups as the way to get growth in the economy and to create more jobs. This needs to be backed by more bank lending and start up loans for entrepreneurs…” Sir Richard Branson
About Virgin StartUp
Virgin StartUp is on a mission to change the prospects of start-ups, for good.
Virgin StartUp, with support from the Virgin Group is run on a not for profit basis, so every pound goes towards our commitment to change the prospect of start-ups, for good.
As a Delivery Partner of the Start Up Loans Company* we offer a funding solution of between £500 and £25,000, specifically designed for start-ups (businesses less than 2 years old).
Since launching we’ve distributed millions in Start Up Loan funds to hundreds of entrepreneurs to fund their start-up businesses. To find out about the start-ups we have funded, take a look at our Entrepreneur Stories page or watch the video starring a few of the businesses we’ve helped below.
Our support helps entrepreneurs in six ways:
1. Business advice – every eligible loan applicant will be supported by a Business Adviser to complete a full business plan and financial projections.
2. Funding – we are able to provide a personal loan of £500-£25,000. A Virgin StartUp Loan is a personal loan for business purposes, it’s to help individuals starting a business which is in the planning stages or has been trading for up to 12 months. In certain circumstances this may be extended to 24 months.
3. Mentoring – all successful loan applicants will be matched with a local mentor who will be committed to at least 15 hours of one-on-one face-to-face support over a year.
4. Opportunities to gain unique support from Virgin Group – for successful loan applicants, we will share chances to feature in content, media and campaigns. This can give your business priceless exposure to an international audience.
5. Content and resources – for entrepreneurs across every stage of starting a business, we produce digital content to inspire, motivate and advise.
6. Offers and discounts – by taking out a Virgin StartUp loan not only do you get access to a range of offers from the start-up loans company, including discounted mobile phone contracts with O2 and free legal advice from Lawbite, but you also get a 20% discount on Virgin Trains.
We believe our support is a great way to get ahead. Here’s why:
We financially support businesses without taking equity.
Especially at the early stages, it can be hard to work out how much a business is worth and what you’re willing to give up. Our funding enables entrepreneurs to retain their stake, even if investors are another part of the funding model, or become one at a later date.
Our loans are Government-backed and low-interest.
We offer an interest rate of 6.17% APR Representative (fixed rate) and the loan can be paid back within one to five years. That’s an annual interest rate.
We realise entrepreneurs make mistakes.
The trick is to learn from them. Even some of the world’s best entrepreneurs didn’t succeed until their third or fourth idea. With this in mind, although we carry out a credit check for all loan applicants, it will not wholly determine the outcome of your application.
Our mentors believe in you – and us.
All our mentors are experienced entrepreneurs that are unpaid-volunteers who are sharing their time and expertise because they genuinely care about supporting a new wave of British businesses.
This is just the beginning.
A loan and mentor is just the start. Virgin Group offers a host of other support. For example, through our sister programme, Virgin Media Pioneers, entrepreneurs can access a community of like-minded individuals to build networks, access advise and share experiences.
*A Start Up Loan is a personal loan for businesses purposes. Failure to maintain repayments in line with your agreement could have an adverse effect on your personal credit report and make obtaining credit more difficult.