A fast-growing Yorkshire company, which has become one of the region’s leading suppliers of biomass wood pellets, has secured £200,000 to support its further growth from NPIF – Mercia Debt Finance, which is part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund.
VerdEnergy supplies customers throughout the North of England from its headquarters in York, depots in Richmond and Goole and through its fleet of specialist delivery vehicles.
VerdEnergy was established in 2015 by the team behind Duncan Renewables, an award-winning installer of renewable energy systems.
Co-founder Mark Duncan said they had realised that there was a gap in the market for a good quality wood pellet supplier and decided to create a full-service solution for customers, which includes installation, service maintenance and fuel supply. This approach has proven to be a success, with volumes more than trebling in the past two years.
Ian Atkinson, investment manager at Mercia Fund Managers which manages NPIF – Mercia Debt Finance, said: “Biomass offers an environmentally-friendly, lower-cost alternative to conventional energy sources and take-up is growing amongst hotels, country estates, commercial occupiers and domestic users.
“VerdEnergy has quickly established itself as the region’s premier supplier. The funding will provide additional working capital to fund extra pellet shipments and support the increased demand.”
Martin Bell of Red Sky advised the company on fundraising and assisted with the application. He said: “We have been working with Mark for some time to advise on VerdEnergy’s ongoing funding needs.
“The launch of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund came just as the business was seeking a new funding round to step up its activity, and it has proved a perfect match for the company’s requirements.”
Grant Peggie, director at British Business Bank, said: “The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund has created additional sources of funding for those companies looking to obtain growth finance. We are pleased that NPIF is supporting SMEs in the North and providing the funding required to fuel economic growth across the region.”
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.