Enterprise Ventures has announced it is joining forces with Santander and Greater Manchester Pension Fund to launch a new loan fund of £40m.
Enterprise Venture Loans Go Nationwide
At present, Manchester-based Enterprise Ventures has investments strongholds in Yorkshire and Humberside and the North West, but it will now provide up to £1m to established and ambitious SMEs in all sectors and in all areas of the UK.
The new fund brings Enterprise Ventures’ total funds under management to £200m. Chief Executive Jonathan Diggines said: “Enterprise Ventures SME Loans represents a significant new institutional source of investment into the SME market, one which is not subject to the constraints of other Government and European funds.”
Enterprise Ventures SME Loans will be available to established businesses anywhere in the UK, providing they have been trading for three years or more, have a current or anticipated operating profit of £100k, and have a minimum turnover of £1 million. Loans will be available for all purposes, including acquisitions, asset purchases, operational improvement and business development.
“We recognise the important role that small businesses play in providing services and employment within local communities, developing new ideas and technologies, and strengthening regional economies,” said Mr Diggines. ““The backing by Santander UK plc and Greater Manchester Pension Fund supports our aim of providing better access to finance for small businesses and their commitment is highly innovative.”
Strong Business Backing from Santander
Santander is involved as part of its Breakthrough initiative, which aims to provide a unique suite of financial and non-financial services and products for the country’s most ambitious businesses.
Damian McGann, Santander’s Divisional Managing Director for the North of England at Santander UK Corporate & Commercial, said that SMEs are the “lifeblood of the UK economy”, and need “access to multiple sources of finance.” Santander’s business lending has grown by an average of 20% per annum over the last four years, and he explained that Santander’s support of Enterprise Ventures allow it “to fill a gap in the market and provide a breadth of innovative solutions for all ambitious SMEs.”
Details of the Enterprise Ventures SME Loans fund were one of many announcements at the Santander Breakthrough Moments Festival in Manchester, which featured speakers from Microsoft, UKFast, UK Trade & Investment, Cause4, BikeRight, Salford Business School, the Greater Manchester Pension Fund, and the Rio Ferdinand Foundation.