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Business Durham appoints Maven to manage GBP20m investment fund

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Business Durham, the economic development company for County Durham, has appointed Maven Capital Partners as fund manager for Finance Durham LP (FDLP), the GBP20 million investment fund set up to help businesses located in the county.

FDLP will commence the investment process from May 2017 and intends to support up to 70 businesses with the explicit intention of helping these businesses grow and create thousands of jobs in the County.
 
Business Durham was an early stage investor in companies such as Atom Bank, Britain’s first digital bank, which recently raised GBP219 million, and PolyPhotonix, the company that has produced an eye mask to prevent sight loss and treat eye disease in diabetic sufferers.
 
Maven Capital Partners is one of the UK’s most active private equity managers in the lower mid-market, offering a range of flexible funding solutions for entrepreneurial SMEs at any stage of the business growth cycle. In February 2017, Maven was appointed to manage the GBP57.5 million NPIF Maven Equity Finance fund, part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund which will provide equity funding to high potential businesses, including SMEs, across the North of England.
 
Bill Kennedy of Maven says: “Maven is delighted to have been selected to manage this new and innovative fund in County Durham. By working alongside the existing regional business support community, in particular Business Durham, we expect to raise awareness of the financial options available to dynamic, high-growth SMEs across the whole of the County. Alongside providing substantial financial support to suitable SMEs, Maven will work closely with supported businesses to drive value creation and improve operational performance throughout the life of an investment, without interfering on the day-to-day running of a business. We believe that by working in partnership with County Durham SMEs we can help achieve the long-term growth objectives of Durham County Council.”
 
Councillor Simon Henig, leader of Durham County Council, says: “We’re seeing more and more firms locate, start up and grow here in County Durham. This GBP20 million is testament to our commitment to help County Durham’s economy to grow.
 
“We are pleased to appoint Maven Capital Partners as the fund managers to Finance Durham LP as they have a tremendous track record in supporting businesses to scale up. The aim is for the investments to yield a return, so we expect to see the GBP20m grow to help even more businesses in the future. It’s very pioneering for a local authority to do this and we’re very proud to be able to offer support in such an innovative and direct way.”
 
Simon Goon, managing director of Business Durham, says: “Business Durham has a successful track record in actively supporting businesses, be it through funding, advice, or using our extensive network for the benefit of the enterprises. 
 
“We have taken great pride in helping entrepreneurs turn bright ideas into successful businesses and I truly believe this commitment of GBP20 million will be seen as a transformative move because access to finance has historically been a real issue for businesses in the North East. I have no doubt that it will go a long way to address this issue and help businesses create jobs and add to the economic prosperity to the county.” 

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