Home > News & Events > December 2002 > News Article

From First for Business Magazine

Published: 19th December 2002

Left to right - Transtar directors Lee Bolsover and Jayne Wilkinson and South Yorkshire Investment Fund Ltd chief executive Tony Goulbourn

Left to right: Allan Wood, Investment Manager from South Yorkshire Investment Fund, Brian Leach a South Yorkshire Investment Fund Board Member and John McCreery, Director of Alambar

Managing director of Bartec Auto ID Colin Webb with Tony Goulbourn, chief executive of South Yorkshire Investment Fund Ltd and Andrew Chaffer, investment manager from South Yorkshire Investment Fund studying the company's latest technology.

When Lee Bolsover and Jayne Wilkinson were given the chance to buy the company they worked for, they had plenty of ideas and a wealth of knowledge and experience. There was just one slight problem… they didn't have enough cash to turn those ideas into reality.

Thankfully South Yorkshire Investment Fund came to their aid and they are now following their dream after acquiring freight forwarding company Transtar Freight Forwarders Ltd. Their success isn't an isolated case. In fact, the Fund has backed a wide range of businesses in South Yorkshire with financial and practical help.

The Fund is positively helping revitalise the region's economy by closing the funding gap for businesses. It does this by providing an additional source of finance to companies unable to meet all their financial needs from conventional sources. This is done in one of two ways - loans of between £15k and £150k or equity packages where the Fund takes a minority stake in the business.

The Fund is on hand to back small and medium sized businesses in South Yorkshire (or looking to relocate to the region) from start-up through to major expansion and provides finance by way of loan or equity packages to businesses seeking finance for capital expenditure or working capital, investment in new technology, export development or management buy-out and management buy-in opportunities.

One of its unique features is its Mentorbank project, which provides subsidised mentoring support to help management teams grow their businesses more profitably.

Accountant John McCreery benefited from the Fund's financial help and gained assistance from the Mentorbank when he decided to pursue the opportunity of buying into Doncaster-based Alambar Safety Products Ltd. While he had the experience gained as finance director of several companies, he needed extra funding to help him achieve his aim.

"We are delighted to win the support of the Fund and the help of a dedicated non-executive director from the Mentorbank," said John. "We are very much a hands-on team and believe we can make the business work much harder and generate further profitable growth."

The company, which makes customised safety clothing, now has plans to develop high-visibility t-shirts and polo shirts currently unavailable to the market in hot summer months.

Barnsley firm Bartec Auto ID Limited is another company to have benefited. The Fund provided the company with an unsecured loan of £50,000 and helped it obtain a further loan from the National Westminster Bank under the Government's Small Firms Loan Guarantee scheme. This helped the firm keep at the forefront of technology, develop new products and stay ahead of its competitors.

These success stories are just a small sample of those being helped by the Fund as it aims to boost the South Yorkshire economy through commercial lending.

The Fund is also bringing together entrepreneurs with business people interested in investing in high growth businesses through its Capital Network programme, a forum for bringing together entrepreneurs with business angels who are keen to invest in growing businesses.

"Because we understand the nature of South Yorkshire's business community and smaller businesses in particular we are well placed to advise and invest in growing businesses," explained Tony Goulbourn, Chief Executive of South Yorkshire Investment Fund Ltd.

"We are committed to further developing the South Yorkshire economy and helping companies grow through shrewd commercial lending. Our door is very much open and we are keen to discuss investment opportunities with entrepreneurs in the region."


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).