Over 2,800 Scottish businesses in the wedding sector supported by £25m fund
More than 2,800 businesses that operate within the Scottish wedding industry have been supported by £25.9 million worth of funding to help survive the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
A total of 2,811 eligible firms received a share of the Scottish Wedding Industry Fund, which was provided by the Scottish Government and administered by a partnership of South of Scotland Enterprise, Scottish Enterprise and Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE).
The fund aimed to help businesses whose main income comes from the Scottish wedding industry to survive the pandemic and then restart once restrictions ease, thus protecting jobs.
The Scottish Wedding Industry Fund was fully allocated within four weeks of opening on 28 January, with each enterprise agency receiving positive feedback from a number of eligible businesses.
Carroll Buxton, deputy chief executive, HIE, said: “The wedding industry is an important part of our tourism and hospitality sector, which has been particularly hard hit over the past year. The Scottish Wedding Industry Fund has provided crucial support to more than 250 businesses in the Highlands and Islands.
“This has helped them through an extremely difficult time and strengthened their position as we work on recovery.”
Russel Griggs, South of Scotland Enterprise chair, added: “At this most challenging time, the Scottish Wedding Industry Fund has provided crucial support to almost 3,000 businesses across Scotland.
“The success of this fund has been the result of strong partnership working between the three enterprise agencies, the Scottish Government and the Scottish Wedding Industry Alliance.
“All of Scotland’s enterprise agencies, including South of Scotland Enterprise, are here to help businesses across all sectors throughout the ongoing pandemic, with support and advice available via the Find Business Support website.”
Linda Hanna, Scottish Enterprise interim CEO, commented: “The Scottish Wedding Industry Fund was created in a remarkably short time frame to ensure we could get the funding into the hands of businesses that needed it quickly and efficiently.
“Many of the businesses we’ve helped are vulnerable SMEs that rely on the wedding sector for their livelihoods and they’ve told us this funding will ease some immediate financial challenges for them.
“The wedding fund is another example of how we and our partners are working to address the immediate economic impact of Covid-19 while preparing to help businesses recover and rebuild.”