'Important milestone'

Boost for enterprise as BGF partners ES

patrick graham sandy kennedyA new partnership which aims to help budding enterprises has been unveiled between the Business Growth Fund and Entrepreneurial Scotland.

BGF has become a corporate partner for ES which was created in 2014 through the merger of the Entrepreneurial Exchange and the Saltire Foundation.

ES’s networks include more than 1,000 of Scotland’s entrepreneurial leaders who collectively employ 150,000 people and generate revenues of about £17 billion.

BGF – which was setup in 2011 by Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds Banking Group, Royal Bank of Scotland and Standard Chartered – initially invests between £2m and £10m into a business in return for a minority equity stake, and can provide additional funding to support continued growth.

It backs businesses that are privately-owned or quoted on the Alternative Investment Market (Aim) and typically have revenues of between £5m and £100m. As well as providing cash to fuel growth, BGF provides its portfolio companies with access to its Talent Network of experienced chairs, non-executive directors and other specialists who can help to grow businesses.

Patrick Graham, BGF Investor, said: “Becoming a corporate partner of Entrepreneurial Scotland is an important milestone for BGF. Since we were founded we’ve invested more than £100m in 16 companies in Scotland, which demonstrates our commitment to the nation’s entrepreneurs.

“Many of the entrepreneurs who have received financial backing from us are already members of Entrepreneurial Scotland and we know that they benefit greatly from its inspirational development programmes and access to a global network of leaders.

“The work that Entrepreneurial Scotland does in sharing members’ experiences chimes well with our Talent Network, through which experienced directors inject their expertise into our portfolio companies.”

Sandy Kennedy, CEO of Entrepreneurial Scotland, added: “Bringing together the UK’s leading growth finance provider with our members, who are entrepreneurs and those who are leading businesses, is an important step towards achieving our ambition of Scotland becoming the most entrepreneurial society in the world.

“Our corporate partners are limited to key organisations with a significant presence in the Scottish business community, a track record of backing entrepreneurial leaders and encouraging business growth, and who can offer distinct value to our members.

“BGF bring expertise, experience and resources to help to fulfil our vision by inspiring and developing Scotland’s entrepreneurial leaders.”

BGF joins the ES group of corporate partners, that includes: accountancy firms EY and Johnston Carmichael; law firms Pinsent Masons and Turcan Connell; economic development agency Scottish Enterprise and the leading investment bank UBS.

Entrepreneurial Scotland’s corporate partners provide its network with access to expertise, experience and resources to help them grow and scale their businesses.

Photo: Patrick Graham and Sandy Kennedy

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