Creative Scale Up open to applications

20 Nov 2019

Creative Scale Up is a new programme designed to support creative businesses in the West of England to grow and access finance. This is a £1.3 million Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) funded pilot programme which will explore how best to support businesses in the creative industries sector to grow whilst encouraging investment into the sector.

About the programme

Businesses that are selected onto the programme will receive a package of tailored business support including a mentor, facilitated face to face peer support, training and workshops and the opportunity to pitch for small grants for specific purposes. Businesses will also be supported to engage with a network of investors. The business support programme will run until autumn 2020, each business on the programme will be part of a cohort and will receive approximately 6 months of intensive support. There will be further opportunity to engage with investors until the pilot programme ends in summer 2021. There is no financial cost for businesses taking part in the programme, just an expectation that business leaders will commit their time to engage with the activities on offer. This is a competitive programme, we want to focus on investing in businesses that demonstrate genuine ambition to grow, innovate and contribute to the region’s economy.


Businesses applying to join the programme need to:

  • Have a minimum of 8 employees, up to 4 of whom can be regular freelance staff
  • Have scaled by 10% in the last year (turnover or employees)
  • Have ambition to grow by at least 20% over the next 3 years
  • Be a Creative Industries business
  • Have not received More than Euro 200,000 in government funded business support in the last 2 years
  • Be based in the West of England (Bath and North East Somerset, Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire)
  • Agree to participate in the activities and workshops of the programme

Creative Industries businesses are defined as those working in the following sectors:

  • Advertising & Marketing
  • Architecture
  • Arts & Culture
  • Craft
  • Createch (tech that is immersive or enables creativity, for example music software)
  • Design
  • Fashion
  • Gaming
  • Music
  • Publishing
  • TV and Film

How to apply

To express an interest in applying for the programme or to request further information, please contact: