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5th December 2019

Female led-companies account for record 24% of fund raisings on Crowdcube

Women-led companies have more success with Crowdcube’s crowdfunding platform than with any other method of equity financing. Out  of 760 UK start-up or growth companies that have funded on Crowdcube, 24% are founded by women. Female founders have driven 216 UK-led successful raises on Crowdcube, which have collectively raised £107m, since the company began in 2011.

4th December 2019

BGF-backed IFA forges ahead with DPF deal

Sheffield-headquartered Independent Forgings & Alloys, one of the UK’s leading independent aerospace and industrial forgers, has acquired Doncasters Precision Forgings, from Doncasters Group.

In March 2018, BGF, the UK and Ireland’s most active investor in growing businesses, invested £8.5m in IFA. DPF was identified as a strategic acquisition opportunity as part of the business’ growth ambitions to reach £50m sales.

4th December 2019

North East innovation network celebrates Award winners at VentureFest North East

Hundreds of businesses, entrepreneurs, investors and experts descended on St James' Park, Newcastle last week for VentureFest North East.

A series of high-profile national and international speakers and business leaders provided inspiration and practical tools to delegates who gathered at the region's innovation conference to learn from one another before celebrating success at the North East Innovation Awards during a ceremony that brought the event to a close.

4th December 2019

SeedTribe relaunches as ‘UK impact hub’

Ethical investment platform SeedTribe has relaunched as a new UK-focused impact hub. The platform will connect startups with individuals, corporates and governments interested in helping profit-with-purpose businesses. SeedTribe’s new focus will be supporting inspiring entrepreneurs in ways not solely connected to finding equity investment. This includes mentoring, networking and recruitment.

4th December 2019

Vacuum Furnace Engineering receives £1.5m from MEIF Maven Debt Finance

The Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF) Debt Finance, managed by Maven Capital Partners, has provided Black Country based Vacuum Furnace Engineering Ltd, with a £1.5m funding package. This will enable the business to increase output, fund several large projects and pursue its growth strategy.


4th December 2019

Esme Loans hits £100M of lending

Esme Loans, the SME digital lender backed by NatWest, has achieved £100million of lending to UK SMEs.

3rd December 2019

Finance firms spend most on cyber security 2019 says Hiscox

The prevalence and severity of cyber-attacks/breaches has damningly increased over the last few years. 

3rd December 2019

Charity Bank raises £5 m subordinated debt with the help of ClearlySo

Charity Bank, the loans and savings bank owned by and committed to serving the social sector, has announced both the successful raise of nearly £5 million in subordinated debt and its plans to attract an additional £10 million in new equity investment from charities, trusts and foundations. This capital will enable Charity Bank to grow its support for the social sector and increase its capacity to respond to a growing demand for repayable finance, including the significant unmet demand for unsecured funding.

3rd December 2019

NatWest and Moneypenny join forces to support UK small businesses

NatWest is partnering with Moneypenny, the world’s largest and highest rated outsourced communications provider, to bring the 900 entrepreneurs it supports through its Accelerators exclusive access to tools and advice that will help them to grow and develop their businesses.

3rd December 2019

Sunburnt grapes and bouncing stones

I was in Burgundy last week with a travelling companion to have a look at the wines of the 2018 vintage and what an interesting trip it turned out to be.

3rd December 2019

Mercia acquires NVM's VCT business

Mercia Asset Management has announced its intention to acquire the management of the three Northern Venture Capital Trusts (VCTs); Northern Venture Trust PLC, Northern 2 VCT PLC and Northern 3 VCT PLC, from NVM Private Equity LLP.

This will fulfill Mercia’s ambition to become the leading provider of complete, connected capital to regional SMEs. The deal will significantly increase Mercia’s Assets under Management (AuM) by c.50 per cent to c.£0.8billion. This will ensure that regional businesses will have even greater access to Mercia’s significantly enhanced investment capability and support during 2020 and beyond.

2nd December 2019

Praetura Ventures leads XR Games' £1.5m funding round

Independent games studio and virtual reality developer XR Games has secured a £1.5m funding round, led by Praetura Ventures alongside existing investor ACT Capital Partners.

Praetura Ventures, the firm committed to providing capital and support to early-stage businesses across the north of England, has invested from its EIS 2019 Fund and will now work closely with founder and CEO Bobby Thandi and his team as they execute the next stage of their growth strategy.

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