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Finance Yorkshire fuels region’s food and drink producers

The food and drink manufacturing industry in Yorkshire and the Humber is thriving with the help of major investment from Finance Yorkshire.

More than £4m has been invested in food and drink businesses by the regional funding body – making the sector one of the most successful in the region.

Investments totalling over £4 million have been made in breweries, cake and meat companies, all contributing to Yorkshire generating 12.5 per cent of the UK’s food and drink turnover.  The sector employs an estimated 52,700 people, making up 17 per cent of the region’s total manufacturing workforce

Support from Finance Yorkshire’s Equity Linked, Business and Seedcorn funds is enabling producers to grow, create jobs and exploit new market opportunities.

Alex McWhirter, chief executive of Finance Yorkshire, said:

“The food and drink sector is a major player across Yorkshire and Humber and our funding has helped create sustainable growth for some of the businesses involved. Most importantly, our investments

are ensuring that SMEs such as brewers who seek financial support can continue to manufacture their fantastic products right here in Yorkshire.”

Businesses benefitting from Finance Yorkshire investment include:

  • Ilkley Brewery, Ilkley – £150,000 Business Loan for fermentation and automatic cask filling equipment
  • Abbeydale Brewery, Sheffield – £200,000 Business Loan for new fermenters to increase its capacity, and the overhaul of its IT system
  • Wharfe Bank Brewery, Pool-in-Wharefdale, – £50,000 Business Loan for the labelling and branding of pump clips and premium bottled beers to emphasise the craft nature of its beer
  • Enjays Pancakes, Leeds, West Yorkshire – £350,000 Equity Linked Investment to develop its product range, and creation of 10 new jobs
  • Exquisite Cakes, Leeds – £50,000 Business Loan to market its products and services
  • Bankwood Meats, Doncaster – £100,000 Business Loan to fund a new boiler which  increased the firm’s output and improved its environmental impact.
  • Euphoria Cocktails, Leeds – £225,000 Equity Linked Investment to support the growth of business and and achieve scale for their niche product.

Chris Ives, managing director of Ilkley Brewery, said:

“Investment from Finance Yorkshire came at a critical time as the UK market for beers has become very competitive and it’s been important we were able to maintain our existing supply, while growing and expanding our market.

“The funding has allowed us to grow and compete on quality over a relatively short period of time.”

Managing director of Enjays Pancakes John White said:

“The equity finance from Finance Yorkshire has secured our long-term future at a really critical time.

“It has opened up many opportunities in potential new markets and allowed us to take an increasingly strategic approach to the future.

“We’ve developed a new product range and built firm foundations for long-term growth.”

Finance Yorkshire provides seedcorn, loan and equity linked investments, ranging from £15,000 to £2m to help a range of small and medium sized businesses to meet their funding requirements for growth and development.

To date, Finance Yorkshire has made 617 investments totalling £77 million.

The project is supported financially by the European Union.

It has attracted £30million investment from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of Europe’s support for the region’s economic development through the Yorkshire and Humber ERDF Programme, £15million from UK Government and £45million match funding from the European Investment Bank.

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Darren Morris, Finance Yorkshire investment manager, and Euphoria Cocktails director Victoria Novis

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