Broadband boost for businesses

 

Small and medium sized businesses across Liverpool can now benefit from funding to help with the set up costs of high speed broadband.

The Liverpool Broadband Vouchers Scheme, which has been operating in parts of Liverpool City Centre since September 2014, has now been opened up to applications from across the entire city council boundary area.

It gives eligible SMEs up to £3,000 towards the capital costs of a super/ultra-fast broadband connection.

It is being implemented as part of a national drive to provide a much better service of superfast broadband.

Councillor Gary Millar, Cabinet member for business, enterprise and investment, said: “We want Liverpool to be the best digitally connected city in the UK.

“We have a long road ahead to achieve this but the expansion of this scheme is a major leap in taking the city’s economy to the next level.

“We are competing on a global stage and investment in our digital infrastructure is a real priority for the city.”

The scheme has proved successful in the parts of Liverpool City Centre that have been covered to date and it is hoped that the expansion of the scheme will result in many more Liverpool businesses taking up the offer.

The voucher can be used towards the cost of making the physical connection to business premises but cannot pay for monthly rental or for any IT equipment.

The connection needs to give a real change in service speed – upgrading to a minimum of 30Mbps on a shared line or 20Mbps on a dedicated business grade line

More information on the scheme is available at www.connectionvouchers.co.uk/liverpool

The eligibility criteria are:

• Must be an SME (Small or Medium Enterprise), Charity or Social Enterprise
• Must be located within Liverpool Local Authority area
• The connection must cost more than £100
• Must be seeking a connection to the SME’s business premises
• Must sign up for a minimum 6 month contract with their supplier
• Must select a service that is capable of achieving 30Mbps or higher or a doubling of existing speeds
• Must not have received more than approximately £120,000 in grants in the last three years

More information about eligibility and an eligibility checker is available on the vouchers scheme website at: www.connectionvouchers.co.uk/liverpool