Fall in business confidence fails to slow down Enterprise Ventures

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Venture capital group Enterprise Ventures is on track for record year despite a fall in business confidence.

The company, which has offices in Sheffield and Leeds, invested £5.4 million in 41 deals in the three months to the end of September, bringing the total value of deals so far this year to £17.3m.

The firm says that puts it on course to beat last year’s highest ever investment figure of £19.7m.

EV manages funds worth £130m including the Coalfields Funds and Finance Yorkshire’s Small Loans and Seedcorn Funds.

Chief executive Jonathan Diggines, above, said: “Uncertainty in the economy appears to have dampened demand for investment funding overall.

“At the same time those entrepreneurs who are planning new ventures are more active in seeking out alternative sources of finance as they fear rejection by the banks.

“We have continued to achieve a steady flow of enquiries and investments. EV is now one of the largest and most active providers of finance to businesses in the sub-£10 million turnover category.

“It is these smaller firms that struggle most to find funding currently, as even where investment funds are targeted at SMEs, conventional funders consider it safer to invest in those at the higher end of the turnover range.

“EV is playing a valuable role in plugging the funding gap for the UK’s smaller companies.”