The Tilburg municipality has today launched a new support programme for starting entrepreneurs. Eligible entrepreneurs can apply for a loan of up to 15.000.

The rescue comes just in time. Strong corona restrictions cost starting businesses more than just their revenue. With the high uncertainty around the pandemic, banks are losing faith in the hospitality industry. This makes it particularly hard for entrepreneurs to get support.

While the national government promises support packages for starting businesses, these will be available no earlier than May. Every month without revenue can be detrimental to a starting business, so Tilburg decided to take the matters into their own hands. The support programme from the municipality is thus a welcome surprise for business owners.  

No interest for the first year

The programme is designed so that the loan doesn’t have to be repaid for the first three years, and the first year is interest-free. After that, the interest rate for participating businesses is 2%. 

Tim Frenken, the owner of the city beach Beachy, has mixed feelings about the programme. “Some entrepreneurs already have such high debts that they don’t want to take out another loan,” he tells RTL Nieuws.

However despite this reservation, he is grateful. “You often don’t feel heard in a crisis like this. It’s nice to see the municipality stepping in.”

What do you think? Would you like to see other municipalities pitch in and give local businesses support?  Let us know in the comment below!

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Feature image: Andrew Neel/Unsplash

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