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Profile Winter 2009 Newsletter

SYIF: A view on intermediaries

In a reversal of roles to the usual intermediaries view article, Profile, is taking a closer look at the work SYIF does with the business advisors who have helped generate deals and build awareness of the Fund. 

During the last eight years, intermediaries have played a pivotal role in making sure almost £60million (including money with management) has been invested in South Yorkshire businesses.

SYIF has worked with hundreds of intermediaries during this time from a variety of organisations, including corporate finances, business support advisors, banks, accountants and solicitors.

All have acted as an important voice in local business, informing SYIF not only of the investment opportunities available, but also what companies need to support their growth.  

Tony Goulbourn, chief executive of SYIF, said: “We are very aware that SYIF’s success has been down to the help and commitment of its intermediaries over the last eight years and we are very grateful for their support. 

“Without this support SYIF would not have been as effective in achieving its objectives of providing gap finance, making a real impact on the local economy and creating a return on investment of around £17 million.”

The involvement of the Fund has been vital to many local transactions especially in the current economic climate. Over the years, SYIF has given confidence to the banks and other funders as it has taken its own due diligence on transactions. Working closely with intermediaries has resulted in additional flexibility and faster turnarounds on decisions due to the reduced risk.

Intermediaries have worked with the Fund because of the range of practical funding solutions from small unsecured loans, where an intermediary may be looking for additional headroom for working capital through to equity and mezzanine finance to support acquisitions for companies or for individuals looking to execute management buy-outs or buy-ins. 

In addition, many of the regions intermediaries have been actively involved in SYIF’s mentorbank scheme and have helped business by providing an objective, dispassionate, critical sounding board to promote effective strategic management and by supporting the development of management teams. 

Mentorbank has provided an important stimulas to the regions intermediaries and has encouraged the take up of professional advice and guidance.

Tony Goulbourn, added, ‘SYIF would not have achieved its objectives without the help and support of the regions intermediaries and we look forward to developing existing and new relationships in the future’

SYIF is working with Yorkshire Forward and Partnership Investment Finance in the development of the successor fund ‘Finance Yorkshire’, which is set to be launched in early 2010.  

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).