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Successor Fund Planned to Continue Business Investment

Published: 28th February 2008

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Tony Goulbourn, Chief Executive, South Yorkshire Investment Fund

South Yorkshire businesses could benefit from a share of £150 million to help them grow and develop.

South Yorkshire Investment Fund (SYIF), which provides investments to help small and medium sized businesses meet the gaps in funding for growth and development, is currently in talks about establishing a Yorkshire-wide Successor Fund.

SYIF believe the new fund, planned to start in 2009, will continue the success it has achieved with its current fund SYIF1, which is set to come to an end later this year.

Tony Goulbourn, Chief Executive of SYIF, made the announcement at their annual Sheffield roadshow, hosted at the Holiday Inn Royal Victoria hotel.

Tony said: "We are talking to the Regional Development Agency, Yorkshire Forward, the European Commission and the Government about having a new fund. They have been very positive about it.

"They have conditionally committed £60 million of money and we are also talking to the European Investment Bank about the possibility of matching that to create a core fund of £120 million. On top of which we can then attract private sector finance to provide a fund that will, going forward for the whole region, continue the good work we have started in South Yorkshire and drive the momentum forward for businesses.

"The monies that will be allocated to this new Regional fund which will be distributed between South Yorkshire and the rest of Yorkshire. They will be a dedicated allocation of money for South Yorkshire which will means the work started here will continue.

"The ideal is that we have this in place by 1 January 2009, that’s a tough ask at the moment. We are talking to Yorkshire Forward about an interim fund to cover any gap, because the worst thing that could happen is that we lose momentum which takes twice as long to restore in the market."

The roadshows, which are taking place across South Yorkshire, highlight the success of investment in businesses, the impact SYIF’s investments have made, including testimonials from clients and a question and answer session.

Dr. Malcolm Wilkinson, Managing Director of Sheffield-based Kirkstall Ltd, spoke to delegates at the Sheffield event about how his company was able to produce a technology data software package for the pharmaceutical industry following assistance from SYIF.

Tony added: "These roadshows are always a useful occasion to highlight the achievements of the Fund across South Yorkshire during the last 12 months.

"Over the five years of the Fund we have always staged the roadshows and each one has been a success. This year more than 500 people will attend the roadshows, which is a reflection of the success and the demand for people to hear what is going on."

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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).