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Profile Summer 2007 Newsletter

Financial Progress For BME Business Forum

Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) businesses will be given increased access to the financial support available thanks to help from SYIF.

The city's BME Business Forum has been brokering a series of meetings with banks and finance providers to outline the needs of BME businesses.

Forum Co-ordinator Bernadette Grocock said finance is one of the most frequent areas of concern for forum members and that there is often a lack of understanding on both sides as to the help required and support available.

But following on from the Forum's Accessing Finance event last year, which was sponsored by South Yorkshire Investment Fund, Bernadette and SYIF Chief Executive Tony Goulbourn have been working with banks and other financial organisations.

Said Bernadette: "Tony and I have been meeting with several key banks and financers to discuss the financial needs of BME businesses and how we can all work together to meet those needs more effectively. The meetings have been incredibly productive."

Alastair Watson of Lloyds TSB Bank, who is also a director of Pro South Yorkshire, helped to organise and co-ordinate the meetings with key leaders from the banking community.

Tony Goulbourn said: "I'm delighted with the progress that has been made at these meetings. The language of finance can be complex and knowing who to turn to and what they are able to offer can be confusing.

"Through organisations such as the BME Business Forum, SYIF and the banks working together, hopefully we can enable more entrepreneurs find the support necessary."

The Forum is planning to host a second Accessing Finance event later in the year.

For further information about the BME Business Forum contact Bernadette Grocock on 0114 281 4748.

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).