L-r: Ian Atkinson from Mercia Fund Managers, Mark Duncan, MD of VerdEnergy and Martin Bell from Red Sky
Mercia Fund Managers, which manages part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF), has invested over £20.0million to support growing businesses in Yorkshire, the Humber and Tees Valley, creating over 250 jobs.
Since the launch of NPIF in February 2017, Mercia has provided loans and equity investment for 71 companies.
Mercia provides funding to support growing businesses and create economic prosperity in the region. Companies that have received loans from NPIF - Mercia Debt Finance include Whitespace Technology of Sheffield which is rolling out high-speed broadband to rural areas by using spare capacity on the TV network; Black Diamond Security of Doncaster which monitors security at many UK rail sites; biofuel suppliers VerdEnergy in York; and the Hull construction firm Westlinks.
Meanwhile NPIF - Mercia Equity Finance has invested in businesses including SatSense, a University of Leeds spinout which uses satellite technology to detect ground subsidence; Hull-based Moodbeam, whose wearable device can monitor a user’s mood and enhance mental wellbeing; Sheffield-based Libertine, which is helping to develop a new type of energy-efficient engine; York-based e-commerce software firm Pure Clarity; and Laytrix of Darlington which is developing new sub-sea pipe-laying systems.
Paul Taberner, Head of NPIF – Mercia Debt Finance, said: “The Mercia team has strong connections within the regional business community and we are working closely with advisers, Business Growth Hubs and Local Enterprise Partnerships. We have backed some of the North’s most innovative businesses as well as those in more traditional industries. The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund is playing an important role in providing affordable finance for growing businesses and developing the industries of the future. We have made great progress with investing and can see the funds are already starting to make a real difference in terms of supporting business growth and creating jobs and prosperity.”
Ken Cooper, Managing Director at British Business Bank, said: “It is great to see Mercia putting Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund money to work in this way. They are backing an impressive portfolio of small businesses and reaching out to companies that might not otherwise realise the opportunities available from taking on external financing. This is generating new jobs and economic impact in the region. I am looking forward to seeing what the next £20.0million brings.”
The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund project is supported financially by the European Union using funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and the European Investment Bank.