What would you do with £500 for your business idea or project?

You can now apply for £500 whether you have a registered business or not. There are two strands of funding you can apply for depending on the stage you are at with your business or idea. A breakdown of each fund is listed below - see which one applies to you and follow the link to find out more:

Ideas Fund - £500

Apply for £500 to try you own freelance or start-up idea with the Ideas Fund.


If you would like to try an idea out, but don't have a registered business yet, then you can apply for £500 through the Ideas Fund. If your initial application is successful you will be invited for a panel interview. Once funds are awarded, money will be paid to you up front and receipts are required upon completion.


Start-Up Fund - £500

Started a business or registered as self-employed? Claim £500!


If you have started a business or registered as self-employed (freelancer), you can apply for a minimum of £500 through the Start-Up Fund. You will need to pay up front and have your receipts ready before you apply but there is no interview process so you can apply anytime. We have provided a shopping list as a handy guide to help you with the more typical costs associated with getting started.
Available to students and recent graduates (up to two years from graduation).


Boost your business with a free Shopify account

Shopify accounts are now available to University of Birmingham students, graduates and staff

The University of Birmingham B-Enterprising Start-Up Team have partnered with Shopify to offer you access to a free Shopify account for two years. Shopify is a subscription based software which allows you to create your own online marketplace. This opportunity is open to all University of Birmingham students, graduates and staff with a email address. Please read the following instructions carefully before selecting the below link:

  • To get started, please click on the below Shopify link below and select your free 14 day trial. After starting the 14 day trial, your account will automatically be converted into a free 2 year subscription. This convertion to a free account will only work if you use the below link at the very start.
  • After starting your trial, the transfer to your free 2 year plan can take up to 24 hours. If you see a store countdown in your Shopify admin, please ignore this. There is no need to pick a plan.
  • Important: You must use your University of Birmingham email address (ending in to activate this opportunity
  • At the end of your 2 year plan, you have the choice to pick a paid plan or let the account freeze.

Be inspired to start something 

If you need inspiration for your Shopify Store design we recommend searching for existing stores online or visiting Inspiring Stores for ideas.

Contact the B-Enterprising team

If you are unsure which fund you should apply for, feel free to email the B-Enterprising team at


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