Access to Finance - Supporting Business Growth

 

SMEs are the backbone of our economy providing approximately three quarters of all private sector jobs and turnover. Regardless of size or stage of development, businesses need funding to scale to the next level.

Aimed at ambitious SMEs whose growth is constrained by a lack of traditional finance, Invest NI provide a range of funding solutions under the banner of ‘Access to Finance’.

Totalling almost £200m, there are seven funds spanning a deal size range of £10k to £3m and offering support to SMEs across both debt and equity markets.

 

Access to finance table

 

The funds, which operate on a fully commercial basis, are managed by independent NI based FCA approved fund managers who retain responsibility for all investment decisions. The experienced and knowledgeable fund managers will also offer guidance and mentoring support to help SMEs develop strategies and ultimately unlock the full potential of their business.

Finance for the funds may be provided solely by Invest NI (part financed by the European Regional Development Fund), or in conjunction with the private sector.

If you want help to take your business to the next level then don’t hesitate to get in touch.

 

Loan Funding

Northern Ireland Small Business Loan Fund  

Northern Ireland Small Business Loan Fund

Fund Manager: Ulster Community Investment Trust

An £8m loan fund for NI based individuals, private companies and social enterprises in the SME and micro enterprise size range and in the start-up or growth phases of development. Loans are typically unsecured and range between £10k and £100k (maximum £15k for start-up business).

  • Loans are typically unsecured, although personal guarantees may be sought
  • Loans are provided on commercial terms with pricing reflective of the risk involved
  • There must be an identified funding gap in a proposed investment (applicants must have tried and been unable to raise all required funding from Banks / financial institutions)
  • Businesses applying must be able to demonstrate ability to service loan repayments
 

Case Study

Hear from companies who have benefited from the Northern Ireland Small Business Loan Fund:

BLK-BOX

iota

 

For more information visit: NI Small Business Loan Fund

T: 0800 988 2879
E: Send Email to NI Small Business Loan Fund

Growth Loan Fund II (ERDF)  

Growth Loan Fund II (ERDF)

Fund Manager: WhiteRock Capital Partners

A £30m loan fund designed to support export focused NI SMEs demonstrating growth or strong growth potential. Loans are typically between £100k and £500k.

  • Loans are provided on commercial terms with pricing reflective of the risk involved
  • There must be an identified funding gap in a proposed investment (applicants must have tried and been unable to raise all required funding from Banks / financial institutions)
  • Companies must be able to demonstrate their ability to service loan repayments from projected cash flows

This fund is part-financed by the European Regional Development Fund under the EU Investment for Growth and Jobs Programme 2014 - 2020.

 

Case Study

Hear from companies who have benefited from the Growth Loan Fund I:

Conveyortek

We are Vertigo

 

For more information visit: WhiteRock Capital Partners

T: +44 (0) 28 9500 1060
E: Send Email to WhiteRock Capital Partners

Growth Finance Fund  

Growth Finance Fund

Fund Manager: WhiteRock Capital Partners

A £30m loan fund designed to support export focused NI SMEs demonstrating growth or strong growth potential. Loans are typically between £500k and £2m.

  • Loans are provided on commercial terms with pricing reflective of the risk involved
  • There must be an identified funding gap in a proposed investment (applicants must have tried and been unable to raise all required funding from Banks / financial institutions)
  • Companies must be able to demonstrate their ability to service loan repayments from projected cash flows

For more information visit: WhiteRock Capital Partners

T: +44 (0) 28 9500 1060
E: Send Email to WhiteRock Capital Partners

 

Equity Funding

Techstart NI (ERDF)  

techstartNI

Fund Manager: Techstart Ventures

A collection of funds providing support to NI based entrepreneurs, seed / early stage SMEs and university spin-outs. Support includes a £17m SME equity fund (investing between £50k - £1m over a series of funding rounds), two university funds of £1.5m each (investing between £50k - £300k), a £3.6m Proof of Concept Grant Fund and an Investment Awareness Programme.

The Funds form part of an enterprise escalator of support for seed / early stage companies and University spin-outs. The Fund Manager will consider investment ideas which present a compelling, scalable high growth business proposition. Evidence of innovation (technology based or otherwise) and /or first –mover advantage will score highly, as will early sales or demonstrable customer traction.

The Proof of Concept Grant Fund awards grants on a competitive basis to help commercialise technology innovation. The funding comes in the form of a “Concept” Grant (of up to £10,000) and a “Concept Plus” Grant (of up to £25,000).

The Investment Awareness Programme provides entrepreneurs, who have ambitions to raise investment finance, with an understanding of the investment process including advice on how to prepare for investment and how to subsequently utilise investment funds to best effect.

This fund is part-financed by the European Regional Development Fund under the EU Investment for Growth and Jobs Programme 2014-2020.

 

Case Study

Hear from companies who benefited from this fund:

CADshare

Nuerovalens

 

For more information visit: techstartNI

T: +44 (0) 28 9032 5506
E: Send Email to TechstartNI

Co-Fund NI II (ERDF)  

Co-Fund NI II

Fund Manager: Clarendon Fund Managers

A £50m equity fund for SMEs based in Northern Ireland. The fund co-invests alongside business angels and other private investors. The fund can provide co-investment in deals typically valued between £150k and £1m and up to £1.25m over a series of investment rounds, at a ratio of up to 50%.

This fund is part-financed by the European Regional Development Fund under the EU Investment for Growth and Jobs Programme 2014-2020.

 

Case Study

Hear from companies who benefited from this fund:

Adoreboard

 

For more information visit: Co-Fund NI

T: +44 (0) 28 9032 6465
E: Send Email to Clarendon Fund Managers

Development Funds I & II (ERDF)  

Crescent Capital Kernel Capital

Fund Managers: Crescent Capital and Kernel Capital

The two venture capital funds will provide £48m of funding to help SMEs in Northern Ireland accelerate their growth. The investment range for each fund is typically between £450k and £1.2m in any one investment round and can be up to £3m over a series of investment rounds.

These funds are part-financed by the European Regional Development Fund under the EU Investment for Growth and Jobs Programme 2014-2020.

 

Crescent Capital

For more information visit:

Crescent Capital
T: +44 (0) 28 9042 8367
E: Send Email to Crescent Capital

Case Study

Hear from companies who have benefited from this fund:

Shnuggle

Humain

 

Kernel Capital

For more information visit:

Kernel Capital
T: +44 (0)28 9042 8367

Case Study

Hear from companies who have benefited from this fund:

Cirdan

HBAN (Halo Business Angel Network)  

HBAN (Halo Business Angel Network)

Fund Managers: Clarendon Fund Managers

HBAN is the all island Business Angel network, a joint initiative between Invest NI, InterTradeIreland and Enterprise Ireland. The HBAN programme encourages business angels to operate within syndicates and it also provides a matching service between companies seeking investors and business angels.

For more information visit: HBAN

 

Not sure that this support is right for you? Contact us and we can explore options for your business together.

Our support may be subject to some eligibility criteria.

 
 

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