British Bank Business Bank has launched the £400m Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund to help boost business for SMEs in the region.
In November 2015, the Chancellor announced an agreement between the British Business Bank and LEPs in the North West, Yorkshire & the Humber and Tees Valley to create a Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund of over £400m, subject to meeting European funding requirements. a separate £120m fund being run by the North East LEP.
A separate £120m fund being run by the North East LEP.
The £400m funding pot will be based in Sheffield and work with the 10 local LEPs, Growth hubs and fund managers offering microfinance (£25,000 – £100,000), business loans (£100,000 – £750,000) and equity finance (up to £2m).
A recent report from the Business Bank highlighted the importance of the North’s contribution to the UK economy – £350bn per year, nearly 1/5th of the whole GDP.
The £400m fund will enable SMEs across the region to build on this, attracting greater levels of investment across the regions.
Keith Morgan, chief executive at the British Business Bank, said: “The region has enormous untapped economic potential that can be realised by improved funding options and opportunities.
“The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund represents a co-ordinated policy approach to help realise this potential across the North.”
The fund managers appointed to manage the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund are:
- Microfinance: Business Finance Solutions, MSIF, Finance for Enterprise and Business Enterprise Finance
- Business Loans: FW Capitaland Enterprise Ventures
- Equity Finance: Maven Capital Partners and Enterprise Ventures
Andrew Percy, Northern Powerhouse minister, added: “Our efforts to build the Northern Powerhouse are delivering real results for local people, with over one million businesses involved, foreign direct investment up by a quarter and 187,000 jobs created in the past year alone.
“This dedicated £400m will help us go even further, supporting smaller businesses across the region to reach their full potential and helping to create an economy that works for everyone.”