Is it a business? Is it a project? Is it a project that could become a business? Or is it, as the old saying goes, Superman?

It may seem like semantics, but funders need to know what they’re being asked to fund. They’ll only know if you tell them. And you can only tell them if you’re clear yourself.

What is the difference between a project and a business?

Projects have aims. Once those aims are met, the project is at an end. By contrast, businesses are ongoing. They may embark on projects, but the business will still be there when the project ends.

Creative Scotland runs the Open Project Fund. You’ll note that the word ‘project’ is in its title, so it will be no surprise that the application form asks for a project start date and project end date.

Developing a second collection/range would be a project. It would happen within the context of the business. So, if funding is sought, it’s sought for the project, albeit that the money will be paid to the business.

The funder will want to know what difference the project will make if successful. How will it move things on?

A project may or may not need a legal structure, depending on its scale. A business will, whether one of the incorporation options or a someone going it alone as a sole trader.

The bottom line is: be clear in your own mind what it is, be clear to the potential funder and show that you’ve thought through the implications.