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A pot of £1m has been promised to 10 UK start-ups as part of a "business accelerator" plan managed by Creative England. Funding for the venture has been partly provided by the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills, whose Regional Growth Fund poured £500k in loan capital into the pot.

The other £500k is equity investment raised from private sources.

Applications for the accelerator programme "Collider12" are open now and it's looking for early stage businesses that can "help brands engage with their customers".

The "acceleration process" will involve mentoring, client feedback and cash for the lucky 10 start-ups.

Each chosen company will get £100k.

In the "Collision phase" of the acceleration, the start-ups are matched up with brands and, er, "collided". The 10 big businesses will be announced in November.

The winner will be the UK economy, says Simon Corbett of Jargon PR. His company is one of the three mentors onboard to guide the businesses through the collision process. Corbett said: "The aim is... to create financial returns and jobs and contribute to sustainable growth for the UK economy."

The other mentors are law firm Taylor Wessing LLP and financial advisors Kingston Smith LLP.

Michael Fallon, Business and Enterprise Minister said: 

The Regional Growth Fund is playing a pivotal role in supporting programmes such as Collider12 to give small business the chance to exploit new opportunities in the creative and technology sectors.

To apply, small businesses should visit the collider site and fill in an application before 2 November. Offers will be made to successful applicants by 14 November. ®

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