Midlands Engine Investment Fund gets into gear

L/R: Nick Pulley, SOB Chair, Ajay Naik, Director Echo Factory, Neil Millington, Head of Investments, ELEM

Midlands Engine Investment Fund gets into gear

The Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF) is now open for business as the first loans are awarded to growing businesses across the Midlands.

Delivered by the British Business Bank, MEIF is investing £120 million of debt finance and small business loans to eligible firms across the region.

This initial tranche of funding is part of a wider £250 million of resources targeted towards the region’s start-ups, scale-ups and SME community.

Loans have been made throughout the Midlands and four companies have already benefitted from the scheme by supporting their growth aspirations.

Direct Digital Controls, in Brierley Hill, West Midlands specialises in the installation and maintenance of energy and environmental control systems.

With MEIF investment, the firm is poised to take on four new employees, train an additional apprentice and expand its growing wired and lighting controls divisions.

Leicester-based BCME, owner of specialist education provider Echo Factory has received finance from MEIF, which will be deployed to market its degree-level music courses, maximising student numbers and empowering the institution to become self-sustaining.

Nottingham-based medical devices company Olberon, has produced a cannulation device that is used in the medical industry, which will have a significant impact on commercial sales globally.

Milton Keynes’ Renewable ON Ltd, a clean energy specialist supplies and installs quality bespoke solar-powered LED outdoor and street lighting solutions to both the public and private sector. 

Nick Pulley, chair of the Midlands Engine Investment Fund’s Strategic Oversight Board, said: “It is heartening to see the first businesses tap into the opportunities presented by the Midlands Engine Investment Fund and, having built a strong pipeline of deals, the fund is well set to accelerate this progress.

“SMEs that are in the market for external finance and have growth aspirations should check the website and seek out fund managers to find out how the MEIF could take their business to the next level.”

Patrick Magee, chief commercial officer at the British Business Bank, added: “Our aim is to make financial markets work better for smaller businesses and address regional inequalities in funding.

“Through our work with the MEIF, we’re poised to support investment, growth and job creation throughout the Midlands.”

The MEIF’s goal is to invest in debt finance and small business loans, ranging from £25,000 to £1.5m, through appointed Fund Managers – Enterprise Loans East Midlands, BCRS Business Loans and Maven Capital Partners.