Business Growth Fund – Ready for Business

11th June, 2019

By Andrew James

At the end of last week an email from Business Growth Fund (“BGF”) popped into my colleague’s inbox with the title “South West SMEs generate £2.8bn revenue growth – Ready for Business”.  Eye catching for someone who works with SMEs in the South West I eagerly read on…

Extracts from the BGF report

The BGF report “Ready for Business” was accessible via the email.  Extracts as follows:

  • BGF is the most active investor in growing businesses in the UK and Ireland.
  • The “research calculates growth through changes in turnover and employee size among the UK’s private companies with revenues between £3m and £150m, a category of 13,286 businesses, 83 percent of which are based outside of London.”
  • “Collectively, these businesses have generated a combined revenue growth of £44bn in the last three years and employ around 2.5m people. Two-thirds are actively hiring (65 percent) – with an average of 1,152 jobs created every week for the past three years – a combined employee growth rate of eight percent.”

There are some regional statistics in the report and the South West has 937 companies whose data has been captured and:

  • These have grown net revenue by £2.8bn
  • Of these 76% have grown revenue (ranking the region 3rd in terms of that percentage)
  • Of these 67% have been hiring (3rd ranked)
  • These have added an extra £13.5k of staff costs on average, equivalent to 8% employee growth

In terms of BGF investment since its inception in 2011:

  • Total investment of £1.9bn since 2011
  • 275 companies backed since 2011
  • 74% of funds invested outside of London

The map of BGF-backed businesses since 2011 shows 3 or 4 in the far south-west of which one is in the county in which I am based, Cornwall.  I do note that the BGF investment in Cornwall, into Seasalt, has been shortlisted as Deal of the Year at Insider Dealmakers Awards 2019 – see FC News piece.

Finance in Cornwall 2019

Unfortunately BGF themselves could not make it to Finance in Cornwall 2019 but Nick Tippett from our Corporate Finance team will I am sure be mentioning them in his presentation.  And we do have presentations from a number of other sources of/ or conduits to equity funding including CIOSIF (more on whom later this week).  For more details on Finance in Cornwall 2019 and to book a place please go follow link.

If you would like to speak to someone at PKF Francis Clark about BGF or other equity investors please do not hesitate to contact me and I will refer you onto one of our Corporate Finance team (who you may have noted have been shortlisted for Corporate Finance Advisory Team of the Year…).

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