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Helping boost businesses across the county

Published: 16th October 2006

Tony Goulbourn, Chief Executive, South Yorkshire Investment Fund.

A Rotherham based investment fund is making a real impact in South Yorkshire having invested more than £24m into businesses in the county.

South Yorkshire Investment Fund (SYIF), based at Templeborough, is gearing up for its 5th anniversary – and fourth birthday of its first deal.  Since its launch the Fund has invested in 191 businesses.

It has also:

  • Created or safeguarded 4243 jobs in the region.

  • Assisted 1106 small to medium enterprises (SMEs).

Chief Executive of SYIF Tony Goulbourn explains….

"We are proud of our impressive statistics – they are clear indicators of how we are helping drive the region’s economy further forward."

"When we look at the businesses we have invested in, we can see it is helping them to grow: increasing turnover and profitability, and consolidating or improving levels of employment."

"South Yorkshire Investment Fund was created as part of the Objective 1 programme to back South Yorkshire businesses going through critical stages of growth. It is funded by the private and public sector, including the European Regional Development Fund and Yorkshire Forward."

"The Fund provides loans and equity investments ranging from £15k to £2.5m to businesses in, or prepared to relocate to, South Yorkshire."

"Our objectives for the financial year 2006/7 is to assist a further 212 businesses, help create more than 250 jobs and safeguard around 440 more."

"A unique feature of the way the Fund can help businesses is the Mentorbank project. This provides subsidised mentoring support to help management teams grow their business more profitably. Mentorbank has developed a database of more than 480 experienced business people drawn from across the UK.  To date we have placed around 195 mentors in businesses – who are helping fill a particular skill shortage in the company they are allocated to."

"South Yorkshire Investment Fund is also planning a Successor Fund. The basic idea is to run a similar, but more focused fund using further European funds which should be available post 2008. These would be used to lever private sector finance, in the same way as the current fund."

"Successor Funds are already successfully up and running in other areas, such as Merseyside and Wales. Economic impacts of such funds can only be truly measured in the very long term and we will await results from these areas, but the general perspective has been that creating sustainable financial funds, focused at local business growth issues, is the best way of developing financial support for businesses."

"SYIF is also a founding member of Pro-South Yorkshire – an initiative aimed at raising the profile and prominence of businesses from the professional and financial services sectors. This initiative has started to have an impact by providing the first steps towards more collaboration in the sector with the goal of raising the positive profile of the excellent services available and winning more business for the region."

For more information about SYIF either visit www.syif.com or ring 01709 386 377.

Editor's Notes

About South Yorkshire Investment Fund

South Yorkshire Investment Fund  provided seedcorn, loan and equity linked investments, ranging from £15k to £2.5m, specifically to help small and medium businesses meet the gaps in funding they need for growth and development.

Created as part of the Objective 1 programme, the Fund is a private and public sector business finance provider. The European Regional Development Fund and Yorkshire Forward are investors in the Fund.

South Yorkshire Investment Fund also provided access to Business Angel investments from the Yorkshire Association of Business Angels and Microloans through BiG Business Loan Fund and Donbac Microloan Fund.

Finance Yorkshire has now taken on responsibility for providing gap finance in Yorkshire and the Humber.

For further details please contact Suzanne Tinkler,  on 0845 649 0000.

South Yorkshire Investment Fund Ltd is a company limited by guarantee (Registered No 3936065). South Yorkshire Investment Fund comprises three sub funds, the South Yorkshire Investment Capital Fund, the South Yorkshire Investment Development Fund, which are each managed by YFM Venture Finance Limited, and the South Yorkshire Investment Small Business Fund, which is managed by Finance South Yorkshire Ltd. YFM Venture Finance Limited (Tel 0113 294 5000) and Finance South Yorkshire Ltd (Tel 01709 386 377) are each authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority. South Yorkshire Investment Fund also provides a number of services, which are not regulated by The Financial Services Authority. These include the pilot Seedcorn Fund, BiG Business Loan Fund, Mentorbank and access to the Donbac Microloan Fund. BiG Business Loan Fund is managed by Donbac Ltd (company registration No. 01925556) and Key Fund Yorkshire Ltd (Tel 0114 242 8900).