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Business News Dragon lends support to businesses


‘Dragons Den’ star Peter Jones and business investor Business Growth Fund (BGF), which has an office in Birmingham, have joined forces to support two high-growth tech businesses. An initial £9m has been invested


in e-commerce platform Localised Group, which recently signed British retailer Boden as its latest customer, and Retail Services Group, a business that provides in- store end-to-end retail experiences for some of the world’s leading technology brands. The collaboration between the


investors brings together the joint networks, capabilities and financial firepower of two major voices in British enterprise. BGF has invested in more than


300 companies since 2011 and has announced a trio of successful exits in the past month. Peter Jones has personally invested in more than 60 businesses spanning publishing, new media, television, food products and more. Mr Jones said: “I’ve joined forces


with BGF to find, invest and grow some of the most exciting companies in the UK today. “Both of us see these initial


investments as the stepping-stones


‘Our joint mission is to find, invest in and grow brilliant businesses while doing all we can to help build the enterprise economy’


we will work within the sector and with Government to achieve this. “Remaining ‘open for business’


means continuing to back new investments which is critical to ensure that confidence is not irreparably damaged.” Both BGF and Peter have


Neil Meredith: Backing Britain’s entrepreneurs


to future opportunities. I couldn’t think of a better partner than BGF, one of the most respected businesses in the growth capital business. BGF has exactly the national footprint that we are looking for today.” Stephen Welton, CEO of BGF,


said: “Peter Jones is a campaigner for enterprise and one of the UK’s most admired entrepreneurs. The scale of his connections within the entrepreneurial community will be a huge benefit to both BGF and our portfolio. As like-minded investors, our joint mission is to find, invest in


and grow brilliant businesses while doing all we can to help build the enterprise economy. “These are unprecedented times


for businesses but BGF remains committed to backing high- potential firms such as Localised and RSG. And as a committed investment partner we will do all we can to support our current portfolio of firms. “In turn, we believe that the


wider financial community has a vital and urgent role to play in helping businesses to access the funding and support they need and


become known for their roles in nurturing Britain’s entrepreneurial talent. Peter was awarded a CBE for services to business, entrepreneurship and young people and BGF is the only investment company to receive a Queen’s Award for Enterprise in Innovation. Neil Meredith, mergers and


acquisitions partner at EY in Birmingham, advised Peter Jones on raising the investment from BGF. He said: “We were delighted to


advise Peter and his team on raising this investment from the BGF. This funding will drive further growth in e-commerce group Localised and Retail Services Group and also provides a great platform for Peter and the BGF to partner on future deals together. “We are strong supporters of


entrepreneurship at EY. We look forward to working with Peter and the BGF on many more deals in the future.”


April 2020 CHAMBERLINK 31


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