Unity Trust Bank, which provides specialist banking services to charities, social enterprises, local authorities and credit unions, has agreed a collaboration with Enterprise Ventures to invest in small businesses in the North West.
Unity has set up a £3m loan fund, which it will invest alongside equity funding provided by the venture capitalist. It is anticipated that the initiative will create over 80 jobs and will finance fledgling businesses with capital to scale up and deliver economic impact in the region.
Andrew Jesson, head of structured lending at Unity Trust Bank, said: “Job creation and sustainable business development are key to developing more prosperous and sustainable communities. We’re pleased to be working in partnership with Enterprise Ventures to provide additional finance in support of its venture capital funds. Together we will ensure the robust development of businesses and local economies in the region, both creating and preserving much needed jobs in areas particularly affected by the economic downturn.”
Enterprise Ventures manages around £145m in funds for small businesses, including The North West Fund for Venture Capital, Lancashire’s Rosebud Fund, the Finance Yorkshire Seedcorn Fund and Small Business Loans Funds and the Coalfields Funds.
Jonathan Diggines, Chief Executive of Enterprise Ventures, said: “We are delighted to be working with Unity Trust Bank – we have seen its expertise and commitment to socially responsible investment first-hand. The new Unity loan fund is a vital source of finance at a time when small businesses are finding real difficulty in accessing conventional bank funding. It also demonstrates the way in which venture capital is helping to leverage additional funding for North West businesses.”