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UKSPF Supporting Socially Trading Organisations

This funding opportunity is for investment into supporting the growth of the social economy for the Liverpool City Region through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

Maximum award: £0.6m

Application deadlines:

  • Expressions of Interest: 19/06/23 – 30/06/23
  • Deadline for Expressions of Interest: midnight on 30/06/23
  • Applications: 05/07/23 – 25/07/23
  • Deadline for Applications: midnight on 25/07/23

The deadline for all applications is midnight on the dates stated above.


The UK Shared Prosperity Fund (“UKSPF”) is a central pillar of the UK government’s ambitious Levelling Up agenda and a significant component of its support for places across the UK. The three priority areas under UKSPF are:

1. Communities and Place

2. Supporting Local Business

3. People and Skills

Investment Priority – Supporting Local Businesses (Socially Trading Organisations)

The Third sector is an important source of delivery and employment in the City Region. The Third sector employs 50,000 people, one in ten of the city region’s workforce, with 1300 socially trading organisations generating £2.9 billion per year for the city region economy.

The aim of this funding is to support the growth of the social economy. The support will help develop the commercial models of businesses in

this sector and to develop capacity within the management of these organisations to help them thrive and grow.

As outlined in the Plan for Prosperity, The Liverpool City Region (LCR) Combined Authority (CA) ambition, is to bring the economy of the whole city region up to national and global levels of investment, innovation, and growth, and to do so in a way that is environmentally sustainable and socially inclusive. The LCR can and will play a significant role in levelling up the UK economy, boosting national prosperity, and improving the lives of residents.

For a Fairer Region, we need to be a leader in social innovation and one of the most inclusive economies in the world. We have taken proactive action to tackle inequality and provide more opportunities for all our residents.

To achieve The CA’s ambitions, we need to help foster an inclusive economy by supporting a stronger Social Business Eco – System.

We have undertaken consultation to understand what STOs need most in the Liverpool City Region and the types of activity we are looking to fund are:

Peer-to-Peer and Mentoring/Leadership Support for Businesses – Knowledge transfer of skills and best practice is a key enabler to support business growth through social economy businesses. Peer to peer Cohorts targeted at all aspects of business development should help to motivate and empower The LCR Social Business Community.

One to one business guidance – Intensive non-financial one to one business advisor support with a focus on all aspects of the business activity – Business Planning, Marketing, Financial Management, HR, Legal, IT etc, but will specifically focus on the commercial model and the methods of driving revenue / funding.

Developing a Social Business Eco – System – Support to build cross sector networks and relationships both within the public and private sectors, so Socially Trading Organisation’s (STO’s) can identify more opportunities to commercialise and work with other Key Growth Sectors across the LCR and they too can gain a greater understanding of the benefits of the social economy.

Provide partner links into the wider LCR business support and innovation eco- system – linking STO’s to a wide range of expertise and other programmes across the Liverpool City Region and through the Place-Based Business Support teams.

It will be important for applicants to demonstrate how your project aligns with key strategic objectives for the LCR and as outlined in the Liverpool City Region Plan for Prosperity and the Social Value Framework (please see the Supporting Documents Section of the Application Guidance for more information on this). Consideration of alignment with other city region wide schemes should also be demonstrated.


Please complete your Expression of Interest (EOI) by downloading our EOI Form Here

The completed EOI should be emailed to [email protected] by no later than midnight on 30/06/23.

The CA Investment team will respond to you within ten working days with the next steps.

If you are successful with EOI stage, the Investment Team will send you the relevant application form, which will need to be returned to the CA Investment Team via email on [email protected] in advance of the application deadline which is 25/07/23

If you are awaiting a response on your expression of interest and it has been more than 10 working days, please check your spam/junk folders first before contacting the team.

Important Documents

Expression of Interest

Application Guidance

Application Form

Annex A


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