social impact report & annual statement
BEF has received a £1m loan to support businesses and entrepreneurs in the North East.

Borrow up to £250k for a wide range of businesses uses

Who are BEF North East?

At Business Enterprise Fund (BEF), we're committed to supporting the growth and success of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) across the North of England. Our Sunderland office serves as a gateway for businesses in the region to access the flexible finance they need to begin, expand, and flourish.

As a not-for-profit social enterprise, provide accessible and affordable funding to SMEs in the North East to help foster economic growth and job creation across County Durham, Gateshead, Newcastle, North Tyneside, Northumberland, South Tyneside and Sunderland.

As an active member of the North East England Chamber of Commerce, we collaborate closely with local business support organisations, commercial finance brokers, and businesses services professionals such as accountants, bankers, and solicitors to ensure that the region's businesses can access flexible finance when they need it the most.

Whether you're an aspiring entrepreneur with a fresh idea or an established business seeking to expand your operations, our team of experienced Investment Managers is dedicated to helping you achieve your financial goals.

What business loans are available?

We provide flexible finance to support different business needs and stages:

  • Start Up Loans: If your business is still new and traded for less than 36 months, you can borrow up to £25,000 to help get things moving.
  • Small Business Loans: If you need more money, there’s an option to borrow up to £250,000. This is for businesses that are a bit bigger and need more cash to grow.

So, no matter your sector, the size of your business or how long you’ve been trading, we have a loan that can be tailored to fit your needs.

Who can I speak to about a loan for my business?

No, we are not. Our Investment Managers will work closely with you to understand you and your business objectives and develop a flexible finance plan that aligns with your specific needs.

We pride ourselves on our flexibility and personalised approach, ensuring that you receive the support you need to navigate the funding process and achieve your business aspirations.

Connect with an Investment Manager:

For more information on how we can help your business, contact us today.

Why choose BEF?

We have built our loans to fit your business needs, and to tackle the unique problems you might face in the area. See how our different approach can your business take off:

  • Fair rates for the North East: Our interest rates are set to match what's going on in the North East, making it easier for businesses to grow without getting weighed down by costs.
  • Local help from local experts: We have people from the area who know all about the local business environment. They tailor our services to give you spot-on advice and solutions.
  • Fast loan approval: We get your loan sorted quickly so you can jump on opportunities or sort out problems without delay.
  • We get the North East: Our loans are built to tackle the challenges businesses face right here, offering real help that makes a difference to local businesses and communities.

Contact BEF North East today

If you want to start or grow a business in the North East, then we are here to assist you. Tell us what you need and we will let you know more about your best available options.


Of course, you might have some questions. Here are some of the most common ones we get about our loans for Yorkshire. If you have more questions, feel free to get in touch with us.

How can I use a BEF business loan?

You can use our business loans to support a wide range of business activities:

  • Start-up costs: Got a new business idea? Use the loan for starting out costs like getting licenses, permits, and buying your initial gear.
  • Property stuff: Whether you’re buying a new place for your business, fixing up your current one, or giving it a makeover, there’s cash for that.
  • Inventory: Need stuff to sell or materials to make your products? The loan can help buy all that.
  • Working capital: This is for the everyday money needs like paying your team, covering bills, and other regular costs.
  • Equipment and technology: If you need new machines, tools, or the latest tech to help your business grow, you can use the loan for that.
  • Marketing and advertising: Get the word out about your business and attract more customers with some marketing and ads.
  • Scaling up: Ready to make your business bigger or go into new areas? There’s money to support that move.
Are you sponsoring the Startup North East Awards 2024?

Yes, we are! We're proud to be the headline sponsor of the Startup North East Awards 2024, recognising and celebrating the region's most innovative and promising start-ups. This sponsorship reflects our unwavering commitment to nurturing the entrepreneurial spirit and fostering a vibrant start-up ecosystem in the North East.

Where can I find news about BEF North East?

Stay informed about the latest BEF North East news and discover how we've helped businesses across the region achieve their goals.

Our news section features inspiring stories of entrepreneurs who have transformed their businesses with the support of BEF funding.