Barclays commits funding and support to UK scale-ups

Bank has pledged its backing to early-stage businesses which have achieved more than 20% year-on-year growth over three years

Barclays has announced plans to support UK scale-ups and their founders through the provision of two new dedicated funds and a team of relationship directors, under its new Barclays High Growth and Entrepreneurs programme.

An increasingly popular term; “scale-ups” are defined by Sherry Coutu CBE as early-stage fast-growth businesses with more than 10 employees which have achieved annual growth of more than 20% over three years. The scale-up sector is estimated to have created over 230,000 jobs in the last year.

The bank’s new initiative will aim to plug the “scale-up gap” by fostering rapid growth in the start-up community, creating jobs and helping the UK compete on the global stage.

The two new funds, totalling £150m, will specifically support innovative companies while the banking firm’s team  of 50 “High Growth and Entrepreneur Relationship Directors” will actively seek out and refer entrepreneurs for specialist support.

200 Barclays senior leaders have completed a training programme with Cambridge Judge Business School to help them understand the financial needs of entrepreneurs.

Ashok Vaswani, chief executive of Barclays Personal & Corporate Banking, said: “It’s imperative that the financial system in the UK is able to fully back brave entrepreneurs who create jobs and unlock new growth.

“By giving expert support to today’s entrepreneurs we can help the UK to win in the digital revolution. We want to be the financial partner for high-growth firms and the people behind them – giving them support across every step of their journey.”

Barclays’ newly appointed head of high-growth and entrepreneurs, Richard Heggie, added:

“Barclays has a strong track record in supporting scale-up businesses and is uniquely placed to help and support ambitious businesses and their founders at all stages of growth, particularly during scale up but also at IPO and exit stage.”

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