The voice for Social Enterprises & Social Entrepreneurs in Northern Ireland. Connecting, supporting, developing and sustaining vibrant businesses to create social change.


Information From Banks Amid the Covid 19 Outbreak

Social Enterprise NI have reached out to local banks to ensure they are prepared to extend support to our members during this difficult time for you and your business.  We are pleased that they have responded in such a positive and concerted manner as noted below.  Please make sure that you get in touch with your bank to explain your situation and allow them to put support packages in place.


We would also draw attention to the announcement on Friday from the Chancellor offering additional support to PAYE staff and also in respect of VAT etc.  We are aware of conversations regarding self-employed staff and hope to hear more of this over the next day or so



The Chancellor, on Friday evening, announced further measures to support people and businesses through this period of disruption caused by COVID-19.

The Chancellor’s statement can be found at GOV.UK.

Updated guidance for employers, businesses and employees is available at:



Bank Responses – COVID 19


Danske Bank

We are proud of our tradition of supporting all aspects of community life in Northern Ireland whether it’s through large business, small business or Social Enterprise so be assured that the message is one of reassurance and support.


Some of the detail of government response both locally and through Westminster is still awaited or being worked through but if any of your members have cashflow concerns please urge them to contact their relationship manager or advisor as soon as they can and we will endeavour to develop a solution.



Happy to be considering requests for funding support at this difficult time across sectors. Challenging times indeed and a whole range of supports will be needed across all sectors. In the meantime contact your Local Relationship Manager


Ulster Bank

Attached is a link to the Ulster Bank page to support during the current Covid 19 situation should you wish to share with your network/team.


We will seek to support where we reasonably can. Can you please encourage your members to contact us at earliest opportunity if they envisage that they will need bank support.


Bank of England

The grants and business rate relief scheme is devolved to the NI Executive and the package they have announced will be administered by InvestNI.  Details can be found here:


Two schemes involving the Bank of England:

•             The measures on 11th March included a term funding scheme aimed at SMEs delivered via the banks: Ask your bank about support.


•             Another scheme for larger firms via the Bank of England and for which there is a market notice explaining some of the detail of how the facility will work: Application forms and pricing will be added to the Bank of England’s website on Monday 23rd. The Bank will publish a dedicated webpage for corporates seeking to use the CCFF as soon as possible.


British Business Bank


As you know at Budget 2020 on Wednesday 11 March, the Chancellor announced a ‘Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme’, and that it would become available ‘over the coming weeks’.

This has been brought forward, and we now expect the new scheme to become available in week commencing 23 March 2020 and will be provided by the British Business Bank through participating providers, and will offer more attractive terms for both businesses applying for new facilities and lenders, with the aim of supporting the continued provision of finance to UK businesses during the Covid-19 outbreak.


The scheme provides the lender with a government-backed guarantee against the outstanding facility balance, potentially enabling a ‘no’ credit decision from a lender to become a ‘yes’. NB - the borrower always remains 100% liable for the debt.

The maximum value of a loan provided under the scheme will be £5m (the original announcement suggested a maximum loan size of £1.2m).


The Government will also cover the first 6 months of interest payments, so businesses will benefit from lower initial repayments. The business remains liable for repayments of the capital.

As well as loans, there are many other types of finance supported by the programme, depending on the provider. You can find out what type of finance they provide on our partner page.

This measure is targeted towards SMEs. It is open to businesses with a turnover of less than £41m (as long as the business is long-term viable and is UK based) which meet the scheme’s eligibility criteria. Full details on the eligibility criteria will be announced shortly.


Our Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme webpage is the best source of latest information.

All of this applies equally across the UK, including NI.