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British Business Bank launches £150m fund for Scottish SMEs

Scottish SMEs
Image credit: Kamira / Shutterstock

State-owned investment group British Business Bank has launched a £150m investment fund targeting Scottish SMEs.

The fund from the investment bank will grant debt funding between £25,000 and £2m as well as equity investments of up to £5m to Scottish SMEs.

British Business Bank said the project is the first solely government-backed SME investment fund in Scotland and would look to increase the supply and diversity of early-stage financing in the country.

“We know access to finance is a key concern for small businesses and are committed to ensuring that founders from all over the country have the same prospects in terms of finance, no matter where they are based,” said British Business Bank chief executive Louis Taylor.

“Scotland is a nation of entrepreneurs and innovators and recent success stories from spinouts and early-stage businesses show that there is huge economic potential.”

The Scottish fund is the second iteration of the bank’s plan to launch six new national and regional investment funds and follows the launch of the South West Investment Fund in July. A total of £1.6bn has been committed to the bank’s regional investment projects.

Secretary of State for Scotland Alister Jack said: “This funding boost will be hugely important in giving smaller Scottish businesses the investment they need to grow. Scotland has some fantastic business success stories, and this new, additional fund will help create even more of them.”

The Department for Business and Trade yesterday announced that Stephen Welton, former CEO of the Business Growth Fund, has been appointed as chair of British Business Bank.

Welton took over the role from Lord Smith of Kelvin, who held the position for six years since 2017.