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Back to News Grant Peggie, director at British Business Bank, at the launch of the Northern Powerhouse

14th September 2022

Helping the North’s businesses harness the power of partnership and innovation


Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund

Grant Peggie, director at the British Business Bank, discusses some of the strategic partnerships the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund  has developed since its launch and the innovation clusters it has provided direct investment to.

An essential ingredient to a thriving economy is the connections and partnerships that exist and through NPIF, we’re committed to fostering collaborative relationships and networks that support innovation and the introduction of new products and services for business and consumers across the North of England. Innovation happens in all areas of the north in all business sectors.

NPIF is providing businesses across the North with access to funding to help them to grow and innovate. It’s equally important to build and maintain relationships with our partners to ensure that small growing businesses are able to access the support they need to fulfil their growth ambitions.

Our work with Sci-Tech Daresbury is one example of how partnerships help to create clusters of innovation and success across the North. Founded in 2006, Sci-Tech Daresbury is a National Science and Innovation Campus located in Liverpool City Region. It’s home to 150 high-tech companies that benefit from the site’s world-class scientists and large-scale facilities. The British Business Bank is Sci-Tech Daresbury’s official Silver Partner, a strategic collaboration to help campus-based companies secure access to organisations whose services and expertise will support companies on the campus.

In November 2021, Perfectus Biomed Group, a microbiological testing provider, secured a £500,000 loan from NPIF – FW Capital Debt Finance. The company is located at the Daresbury site and benefits from using its vast testing and laboratory facilities. When it comes to Daresbury, there’s no better place to be than at the heart of scientific discovery and innovation in the North.

NPIF also plays a key role in other innovation hubs in the North, such Alderley Science Park. In 2020, NPIF had invested a total of £2.5m into businesses based at the park, which is one of the largest single site life science campuses in the UK. More recently, Cryoniss, a biological sample storage and logistics services company, secured a £500,000 investment from NPIF – Maven Equity Finance is January this year.

With a fully operational site at Alderley Park, the investment helped Cryoniss create new jobs, expand its service offering, invest in green tech, and assist in growing its customer base in the UK and Europe.

Clusters of innovation, such as Sci-Tech Daresbury and Alderley Park, give companies in the North of England access to a network of scientific and collaborative resources as well as the opportunity to benefit from NPIF’s funding options.

The effect of NPIF funding for innovative businesses is backed by findings from the British Business Bank’s Backing Innovation-Led Business 2022 report. The Report identified that 36% of the NPIF Portfolio had also received support from UKRI and innovate UK. The recent NPIF evaluation identified that 68% of NPIF businesses surveyed said they had introduced new products to market as a result of NPIF investment and 93% of equity recipients reported increased investment in R&D as a result of receiving NPIF finance.

Successful investments such as these are the driving force behind our NPIF –  Stronger North Roadshows, a series of virtual and in-person events across the Northern Powerhouse region to help raise awareness of the funding options available and to mark the fifth anniversary of NPIF.

Any business thinking about investment should try to attend and find out more about the options through our NPIF events site.

The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund project is supported financially by the European Union using funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and the European Investment Bank.

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