19th March 2013, 1:10pm
Free service launched to help small businesses find funding
British money Small businesses in Lincolnshire looking for funding to help them grow can benefit from a new network launched by the University of Lincoln and Lincolnshire County Council.

The Lincolnshire Investment Network (LIN) is a free service available throughout the county to encourage investment into local businesses.

Councillor Eddy Poll, Executive Member for Economic Development at Lincolnshire County Council, said: “Helping our small businesses to thrive and grow is vital to the future prosperity of our county. However, businesses are telling us they’re still missing out on opportunities for growth because of difficulty in securing funding. That’s why we’ve created this network in partnership with the University. We’re sure that together we can help our small businesses find the funding they need to go from strength-to-strength.”

Andrew Stevenson, Director of Research & Enterprise Development at the University of Lincoln, added: “In the current economic climate, it’s good for businesses to have more than one route of accessing growth finance. An option that often gets over-looked is angel investment. Angel investment or Equity investment, as it is also known, is where a private individual invests money into a business in return for a share. This approach is becoming increasingly popular due to shows such as the BBC’s Dragon’s Den programme which has helped raise awareness.”

Russell Copley from the LIN explained that angel investment it is not always a scary process involving so called ‘Dragons’ and is less daunting than people often think: “The majority of angel investors want to leverage the skills and knowledge gained growing and exiting their own businesses to help young businesses with great potential get from A to B quicker. They are taking a risk, but ultimately if that risk pays off then they get great satisfaction in being able to say they were a part of that success.”

Over the duration of the project the LIN team will be supporting businesses, investors and professional service firms throughout Lincolnshire and delivering a range of events that bring together all three to encourage growth and business development in the region.

The Lincolnshire Investment Network will be at the Lincolnshire Property & Business Investment Show to officially launch the network on the 21st March 2013. Drop-in surgeries will be available for businesses seeking growth investment. These will be one-to-one appointments with Russell, who will be happy to answer any questions about raising business growth finance.

If you are looking for investment opportunities in Lincolnshire or you are a business owner looking for funding, then please email Becky Blackmore becky@lincolnshireinvestment.net to find out more or visit the website www.lincolnshireinvestment.net
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