What is a BID?

A Business Improvement District (BID) is a defined geographical area of a town, city or commercial district, where businesses have voted to invest collectively in local improvements in addition to those delivered by statutory authorities.

What is a BID?

What is a Business Improvement District (BID)?

Essential Edinburgh was established to run Edinburgh’s first Business Improvement District (BID); a defined area where businesses vote to invest collectively in local improvements in addition to those provided by the Local Authority and Police.

A BID is not a substitute for central or local government investment, but an additional investment to strengthen the local economy and give local businesses a unified voice, helping to provide an arena for businesses and local authorities to increase their understanding of each other’s priorities.

How is a BID funded?
If the majority of businesses in the BID area (both in terms of number and rateable value) vote in favour of the BID, all eligible businesses in the BID area will pay a set levy. This money is used to pay for the services and improvements that the BID provides. A BID is also a mechanism for attracting funding from other sources, such as public sector bodies, depending on the projects involved.

How is the levy calculated?
The levy amount is based on a percentage of business rates and businesses on the valuation roll liable for business rates are liable to pay the levy. The levy charged to eligible businesses is usually 1% of their rateable value on the day of ballot (23rd May 2013).