Applications sought for business fund

A SCHEME which provides growth funding for businesses in former coalmining areas is looking for applications from companies in the north east.

The Coalfields Fund offers grants of between £40,000 and £1m to small and medium-sized business at all stages of their development.

The investment, which is in the form of equity funding, can be used to support start-ups and early stage business, provide growth for more established businesses, as well as funding mergers, acquisitions and management buy-outs.

Applications are open to companies situated in the former Northumberland coalfield area, although businesses which draw their workforce from this areas may also be eligible.

The Northumberland coalfield covers an area stretching north along the coast from Blyth to Alnwick, taking in Bedlington, Morpeth, Ashington, Newbiggin, Lynemouth and Amble.

The funds were established in 2004 to support the growth of businesses and encourage entrepreneurship and, so far, have made 28 investments.

The funds are managed by venture and growth capital fund manager EV.

For details, visit www.coalfieldsfunds.co.uk

Paul Betts, investment manager with EV, said: “We are on the lookout for sound businesses with a solid growth plan and can offer funding for a range of purposes.’’ areas to be aware that the Coalfields Funds can offer finance for growth and are actively seeking to invest.

“We are on the lookout for sound businesses with a solid growth plan and can offer funding for a wide range of purposes.

“We will also work with the management team, offering support and guidance to ensure the business achieves its full potential.”

For further details visit www.coalfieldsfunds.co.uk