News story

Second round of bids for Regional Growth Fund being considered

These bids were received in response to the second round of the £1.4 billion fund, which is designed to encourage enterprise, growth and jobs…

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government


These bids were received in response to the second round of the £1.4 billion fund, which is designed to encourage enterprise, growth and jobs in the private sector and support regions that are dependent on the public sector. The bids will compete for a share of £950 million.

The 492 bids, asking for £3.3 billion, are being assessed by the Independent Advisory Board, chaired by Lord Heseltine, over the summer. The board will then make recommendations to a board of ministers, led by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, which will make the final decisions as to which proposals should receive funding. It is expected that the successful bidders will be announced in the autumn.

There were 140 bids received for the North West - the highest of all the regions, which account for 28 per cent of all the bids received. More than 330 of the total number of bids received are bidding for between £1 million and £5 million.

The Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, said:

“This vital regional fund uses government investment and multiplies it to give a real boost to local businesses. Round one is already helping local economies across the country and has attracted £2.5 billion of private sector investment. This will directly create or protect over 27,000 jobs, and secure around a further 100,000 jobs on related supply chains and in local economies. We welcome the bids received for the second round, and hope we can do even more this time.”

Lord Heseltine said:

“We knew from the road shows there was going to be a huge amount of interest in the second round of the Regional Growth Fund, and we have been overwhelmed by the volume of bids submitted.

“There is clearly a hunger for public support which will allow new and exciting projects to deliver jobs and growth in their local communities to get off the ground, and I’m pleased to see so many people wanting to be a part of this. We now face the difficult task of assessing each of these bids; we have a busy summer ahead of us!”

In the first round of the Regional Growth Fund, more than 450 bids were submitted. In April the Government announced that of these bids, 50 had been successful and, following a due diligence process, would receive a share of £450 million.

Private sector organisations and public-private partnerships were invited to bid for a share of the £1.4 billion fund to create jobs and boost local growth.

The allocation of funding each successful proposal will receive will be the minimum amount the proposal needs to get off the ground. Each bid must also demonstrate it is bringing in private sources of funding as well. The public investment in the first 50 successful bids is expected to secure a further £2.5 billion of private investment.

Lord Heseltine and the deputy chair of the independent board, Sir Ian Wrigglesworth, attended a series of road shows held across the country to encourage bids to the second round, and to address any queries or issues. More than 1000 people interested in the fund attended the road shows, where they were also able to attend surgeries with BIS officials.

Notes to editors

  1. All the bids received in the second round of the Regional Growth Fund are commercially sensitive and it is not possible to publish the names of the bidders or details of the proposals.

  2. Further details on regional spread and total value of the bids is available here:

  3. Details of bids by LEP area and the number of programme bids will be available on the BIS website shortly.

  4. Following his new role supporting the new Cities Minister, Lord Shipley has stepped down from the Independent Advisory Board. Three new members, Lord Mike Storey, Sir Alan Cockshaw and Lord John Monks have now joined the panel. The members of the panel are:

  • Lord Heseltine
  • Sir Ian Wrigglesworth
  • Sir David Rowlands
  • Caroline Plumb
  • Jon Moulton
  • Felicity Goodey
  • Prof Anthony Venables
  • Tony Greenham
  • Mark Seligman
  • Andrew Shilston
  • Sir Richard Lambert
  • Lord Mike Storey
  • Sir Alan Cockshaw
  • Lord John Monks
  1. BIS’s online newsroom contains the latest press notices, speeches, as well as video and images for download. It also features an up to date list of BIS press office contacts. See []( for more information.

Notes to Editors

Contact Information

Name BIS Press Office Job Title

Division COI Phone




Name Joanna Fletcher Job Title

Division Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Phone 020 7215 5951 Fax



Published 29 July 2011