A £112 million government scheme to help young people start their own business has supported its 1,000th young entrepreneur.
The Start-Up Loans initiative saw 500 businesses receive cash and free mentoring in the last five months of 2012 and another 500 in the first five weeks of 2013.
Entrepreneur James Caan, chairman of Start-Up Loans said the figures show people have the passion to be entrepreneurs, but just need a helping hand.
He added: “The fact these young people are creating employment brings me enormous satisfaction. If each of the business we start creates two or three jobs that will be a hundred thousand jobs created by this initiative alone.”
“We still have big challenges ahead. We have to raise awareness of Start-Up Loans throughout all of England so every young person knows about this programme. We have to make sure every young person realises the help and support we offer means they can turn their ideas into an income.”
Business Minister Michael Fallon said: “Start up Loans is going from strength to strength. The UK has a proud history of innovation and enterprise and this scheme is helping to unleash that entrepreneurial streak for the next generation.
“But we are in a competitive world and there is still more to do. I want as many 18-30 year olds to benefit from Start Up Loans as possible - we need this momentum to be just the tip of the iceberg.”
Applications have also more than doubled in the last month, from 3,000 to more than 8,300 in January, the current target of backing, with funding and mentoring, over 100 businesses a week is well in hand.
The programme is available to anyone between the age of 18 and 30 whose business is in England. A low cost loan and free first class mentoring means anyone with a great idea and the passion to make it work can now start their business.
To learn more about Start-Up Loans or to register to apply for a loan visit: www.startuploans.co.uk