UK Government

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (National): North West submits highest number of bids to the Regional Growth Fund

Press Release   •   Feb 21, 2011 11:14 GMT

Statistics published today by the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills show that the most number of bids to the Regional Growth Fund came from the North West.

A total of 89 bids were submitted to the fund from the region out of a total of 464.

The £1.4 billion Regional Growth Fund is designed to encourage enterprise, growth and jobs in the private sector and support regions that are dependent on the public sector.

The statistics also include a breakdown of the number of bids received from local enterprise partnership areas and a breakdown of the value of the bids in summary form.

Once the Independent Advisory Panel, chaired by Lord Heseltine, has assessed the bids, they will advise a panel of ministers chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.

Lord Heseltine said:

“The regional breakdown of the number of bids sent in to the fund provides a useful insight in to the economic priorities of the areas and which regions believe they will benefit the most from extra government support.

“It is our task now to extract those bids that are going to make a real difference to boosting private sector jobs and local growth. The level of response to the Regional Growth Fund suggests it’s not going to be an easy task.”

As part of a competitive bidding process the number of bids received should help ensure that government support is best directed to projects that meet the objectives and criteria, and create the maximum benefits in those areas that are most needy.

The figures being made available today also show:

  • That most of the bids were for between £1m and £5m (299 or 64 per cent);
  • The total value of first round bids is £2.78 billion.
  • The breakdown by local enterprise partnership areas.

The Regional Growth Fund will run for three years and there will be a second round this year. The Department for Business, Innovation & Skills will announce the dates for the second round shortly.

Notes to editors:

1. The statistics on the total number of bids received to the first round of the Regional Growth are available to view here:

2. Data for specific areas of the country includes projects that might cover more than one area by proportion.

3. The data in the table for the local enterprise partnership area does not indicate the number of bids endorsed by a partnership, simply the partnership area they fall in.

4. The membership of the Independent Advisory Panel for the Regional Growth Fund is as follows:

- Lord Heseltine, Chair
- Sir Ian Wrigglesworth, Deputy Chair
- Felicity Goodey (Businesswoman, former senior BBC journalist)
- Tony Greenham (Programme Head, New Economics Foundation)
- Richard Lambert (Director General, CBI)
- Jon Moulton (Chairman, Better Capital equity group)
- Caroline Plumb (Entrepreneur, Freshminds)
- Sir David Rowlands (Chair of Gatwick Airport Ltd and Angel Trains Group Ltd)
- Mark Seligman (Chartered Accountant and Banker, Credit Suisse)
- Andrew Shilston (Finance Director, Rolls Royce)
- Lord John Shipley (Former Leader Newcastle City Council)
- Tony Venables (Academic Economist, Oxford University 

5. Bids approved by the panel of ministers will undergo a due diligence process to ensure they meet all necessary criteria before successful bidders can draw down funding.

6. For more information on the Regional Growth Fund please visit:

7. BIS’ online newsroom contains the latest press notices, speeches, as well as videos and images for download. It also features an up to date list of BIS press office contacts. See for more information.


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