Capita secures contract with the Department for International Trade to support SME exporters

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Capita plc today announces it has secured a three-year, £2.6m contract with the Department for International Trade (DIT) to deploy a new digital platform to distribute grants to 7,600 British SME businesses.

The DIT will be the first client to use the new Capita centralised digital grant management platform, GrantIS.

GrantIS will enable SMEs to apply for and receive grants from the DIT’s £38m European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) funded Internationalisation Fund. This fund has been established to help SMEs find new overseas markets for their goods and services.

The grants are co-funded and will see the ERDF funding match the investments SMEs make. The grants will be used by SMEs to overcome the barriers that currently limit their ability to export their goods and services abroad.

GrantIS will provide SMEs with clear information on the fund and how to apply for it. Additionally, the digital application process will enable government advisors to support applicants in real-time, should they require help with their application. It will also provide a clear audit trail for DIT which is designed to avoid fraud and deliver transparency.

The adaptability of GrantIS means it can be changed quickly to accommodate new government policies and scaled up to meet the needs of more grantees. It can also be used by other organisations for different grant-giving programmes.

Andy Start, CEO Capita Government Services, said: “We are delighted to be working with the Department for International Trade to support the UK’s SMEs and to help increase the value of Britain’s exports as the country exits the European Union.

We used our significant grant management expertise to develop GrantIS to transform the grant giving process. It will make the awarding of grants from the ERDF Internationalisation Fund more efficient and effective while delivering a better application experience for SMEs.”