Two digital companies have cashed in as The Angel CoFund has announces the completion of its first five investments. A total of £7.2 million ($11.6m) has been committed to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) across England in this round.
Funds for each company range from around £360k ($580) to £3.6m ($5.8m) and reflect scope of business that the the Angel CoFund is prepared to support. £1.4 million of funding came from the Government and helped to secure a further £5.8 million from other investors.
The five businesses awarded funding are varied in location and across industries. In London, Style-passport a women’s online magazine and e-store and PlayJam, the worldwide aggregator of games for internet enabled TVs gained funds.
Environmental services company in Luton, Enval and Phase Vision, in Loughborough, which makes high-accuracy industrial inspection equipment for the aerospace, nuclear and automotive industries also benefitted, as did Future Drinks, in Bristol, which has developed healthy soft drinks, that will be launched later this summer.
The Government-backed, £50m Angel CoFund invests alongside syndicates of business angels into high-potential SMEs from across England. It is aimed at boosting the quality and quantity of business angel investing in England to support the jobs in growing companies. The Angel CoFund is a private sector fund supported by a grant from the Government’s Regional Growth Fund.
Business and Enterprise Minister Mark Prisk feels that public and private partnership is a good way to boost businesses. Of today’s round he said, “Business angels play a crucial role in supporting new and growing businesses. The variety of businesses that are receiving this funding reveals the range of skills and exciting opportunities that are being created today. It is absolutely critical that ambitious small firms can access the finance that they need to expand and grow.”
The Angel CoFund, expects to invest at least £70m alongside business angels in the next 10 years. Though the details of today’s round have not been released, many of the co-investing angels are taking active roles to support and mentor the businesses.
The Angel CoFund was established by a consortium of business angel organisations, including Braveheart Investment Group, Hotspur Capital Partners, Octopus Investments, The Oxfordshire Investment Opportunity Network (OION), and Capital for Enterprise.