Angel funding

British Business Bank in link up with Mint Ventures

Gillian Fleming
Gillian Fleming: unlocking capital (pic: Terry Murden)

The British Business Bank is working with women-led angel investment syndicate Mint Ventures to improve access to finance for female business owners and to grow the pool of women angel investors.

Access to finance remains the a major barrier to women starting and scaling their businesses, with only 2% of all-women teams succeeding in raising investment.

Yet, while women are 50% more likely to back female-led companies, they represent less than 12% of Scotland’s business angels.

Following a series of roadshows delivered across Scotland, Mint Ventures’ membership has increased by 20% and there is now a community of more than 500 people interested in angel investing.

The British Business Bank provided a £30,000 funding package to support the roadshows and is helping the syndicate with the development of new technology and processes to support further growth.

Mint Ventures’ first investment was in Dundee-based Heero Technologies in April, with the deal helping the cleantech startup to develop its home energy efficiency app.

Gillian Fleming, MD of Mint Ventures, said: “Our mission is two-fold: to support women-led, diverse companies to unlock the capital they need to grow, and to debunk the myth that you have to be rich to be an angel investor.

“There are a number of factors that influence the angel investor gender gap and, underpinning all of our activity is the fact that women typically have a different approach to risk.

“To improve the ecosystem, we need to keep providing access to relevant information and work closely with partners like the British Business Bank to maintain the growing momentum among the female investor community.”

Susan Nightingale, director, UK Network, Scotland at the British Business Bank, added: “Women angel investors play a critical role in supporting female entrepreneurship, but there remains a gap in the knowledge of this kind of investment among potential investors and investees.

“The Bank’s ambition is to improve access to finance for all, particularly among underrepresented demographics. We hope to help accelerate the growth of Mint Ventures and help it to attract new investors and women-led early-stage companies.”  

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