Start Up Loans, part of the British Business Bank, announces that its programme has facilitated over 100,000 loans worth more than £941 million to businesses throughout the UK. The figure marks a significant milestone for the programme since its creation in 2012.

Of the total 100,228 loans, 40% have been to women and 20% to people from Black, Asian and Other Ethnic Minority backgrounds (not including White Minorities). Young people between 18-24 years old have received 14% of loans since 2012.

The 100 thousandth loan was drawn down by James Fraser, owners of Ramen Electra in St Albans, Hertfordshire, part of Start Up Loans' East of England region.

James was working as the general manager of a local pub in St Albans when the pandemic hit in 2020. Unable to work, he taught himself how to make ramen noodles, and since they lend themselves to being cooked in large quantities, he began selling them to hungry locals and Ramen Electra was born.

When the pub re-opened, James brought his new skills into the kitchen at the pub and his ramen proved so popular, that he took out a Start Up Loan of £6,000 in December 2022 to take over food production full time.

The loan paid for kitchen equipment and marketing materials as well as general running costs to get things up and running. Ramen Electra now provides a full menu six days a week for click and collect and dine-in customers.

James is keen to expand his new business and has plans to start looking for a new venue before the end of the year, with a view to securing four or five Ramen Electra locations in the future.

James's advice for budding entrepreneurs looking to take their business to the next level is

"Just start. My mantra is that a good plan today is better than a perfect plan tomorrow. It is going to be challenging and you will make mistakes but have the confidence to just take the leap."

Richard Bearman, Managing Director, Start Up Loans said "Start Up Loans supports people across the UK who are looking to start their own businesses, and passing our one hundred thousand loan milestone is an amazing achievement that has been ten years in the making. We could not have achieved this without the dedicated support of our UK Network of delivery partners, and in-house team and I'd like to take this chance to thank them for everything they do to make our work possible."

This announcement follows the recent announcement news that Start Up Loans has become an official partner of the StartUp Award Series 2023, as well as the launch of the British Business Bank's Guide to Building Business Resilience a manual guide created in response to the significant economic challenges faced by small businesses in 2023. Covering eight key topics for business success, the guide provides concise explanations of key challenges and a series of actionable tips for businesses to implement as they successfully navigate them practical and actionable guidance for start-ups on what they can do to reduce costs, boost profitability, and increase the resilience of your business, whatever the future holds.