Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is The Midlands Engine Investment Fund?
    MEIF, supported by ERDF,  is a collaboration between the British Business Bank and 10 LEPs in the West Midlands and East and South East Midlands. MEIF combines the LEPs’ knowledge of local businesses and economic conditions with the experience and resources of the British Business Bank as Government’s centre of expertise in small business finance markets.
  2. How does MEIF invest?
    MEIF does not invest directly in SMEs. It invests through product funds which are managed by MEIF’s appointed Fund Managers. There are four types of product fund: , Small Business Loans, Debt Finance, Proof-of-concept and Equity Finance.
  3. Where does MEIF’s funding come from?
    MEIF’s funding is drawn from several sources, including UK Government, European Investment Bank, British Business Bank, European Regional Development Fund (which includes nominal allocations from ten Local Enterprises Partnerships).
  4. What type of funding does MEIF offer?
    MEIF’s product funds make commercially focussed investments through four types of funds: Small Business Loans, Debt Finance, Proof-of-concept and Equity Finance. The product funds can provide investment for SMEs in amounts from £25k to £2 million.
  5. How do I apply for funding?
    Enquiries and applications are made direct to MEIF’s selected Fund Managers, full details of which can be viewed at www.meif.co.uk. In our experience businesses improve the turnaround time of their application and their chance of success if they work on their application with their accountant or business adviser. MEIF cannot provide financial or business advice to SMEs seeking funding.
  6. Where do I need to be based to apply for an MEIF investment?
    The Midlands Engine Investment Fund covers the areas of West Midlands and East and South East Midlands. If you are based in the North please look at www.npif.co.uk to view the finance options available in your area.
  7. What’s the difference between MEIF and high street finance providers?
    The product funds that MEIF supports provide commercially focussed funding to SMEs in the West Midlands and East and South East Midlands. MEIF’s product funds can provide co-investment with other funders in a funding round, or can invest alone, where no other funding is available.
  8. What is an SME?
    An SME is a business employing fewer than 250 employees, with an annual turnover of less than 50m Euros (=£45m) or balance sheet net assets of less than 43m Euros. The business cannot be part of a larger group employing more than 249 employees and where the group owns at least a 25% share of the business. To be eligible for funding from the fund that MEIF supports, an SME must have a material part of its operations, staffing or trading based in the MEIF area (or plan to establish such a presence within 2 years.)
  9. Do I need to use a local Fund Manager?
    No, you do not. We recommend that you try your local MEIF Fund Manager first but MEIF has been structured to be flexible enabling you to make an enquiry to any of the MEIF Fund Managers.
  10. My bank can’t fund the total amount that I need, how can MEIF help?
    MEIF’s product funds can invest in companies alongside other investors in a syndicate to make up an investment package.
  11. What funding is not eligible for MEIF support?
    MEIF-sourced funding cannot be used to invest in businesses in the following sectors: property development, ship building and agriculture. In addition it cannot be used re-finance existing commercial borrowing or help failing businesses.

Learn more about the funding options MEIF provide below:

Small Business Loans

£25k – £150k

Learn More
debt finance

Debt Finance

£100k – £1.5m

Learn More
equity finance

Equity Finance

£50k – £2m

Learn More

Proof of Concept

Up to £750,000

Learn More

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