British Business Bank pledges extra £20m to fund tech start-ups
THE BRITISH Business Bank (BBB) has increased its funding to UK technology start-ups by a further £20m, via small- and medium-sized enterprise (SME) lender Boost&Co.
The state-backed development bank said that the £20m was part of a £40m extension to Boost&Co’s Industrial Lending 1 fund, which provides venture debt loans of between £2m and £8m to innovative, fast-growing technology companies looking to scale up.
To date, the fund has made total commitments of £100m, with investments in 33 UK-based SMEs. The additional investment means that it will make up to £100m of further commitments to SMEs.
Previous recipients of the funding have included data analytics firms and ‘software as a service’ companies that improve customer experience.
British Business Bank Investments (BBBI) – BBB’s commercial arm that is providing the additional funding to Boost&Co – has so far committed more than £580m to SME lenders through its investment programme. It has previously lent through a number of peer-to-peer platforms including Funding Circle, MarketInvoice and RateSetter.
“This £20m extension to Boost&Co is a further demonstration of our commitment to promoting greater choice in the supply of lending to smaller businesses,” said Catherine Lewis La Torre, chief executive of BBBI.
“Venture debt finance is an important option for innovative businesses that want to grow rapidly, as a form of capital that can help them scale-up without having to relinquish control of the business. We are pleased to support Boost&Co as they expand the level of this type of funding they can provide to the market.”
Lance Mysyrowicz, partner at Boost&Co said: “We are delighted to receive continued support from BBBI. We look forward to deploying the additional capital in innovative, growing UK SMEs with a passion for technology, and are excited about this next phase in our relationship.”