Bringing more Angels to back the Midlands’ Entrepreneurs
This week UKBAA was thrilled to take our flagship regional investment summit to Millennium Point in Birmingham, bringing together 200 key players from the finance and investment community to explore the opportunities for investment across the Midlands.
Many entrepreneurs across the Midlands have been failing to access the financial support they need to effectively grow and scale their business, and our research has shown that over 70% of Angel investment went to entrepreneurs in London and the South East last year.
The Midlands Investment Summit, sponsored by Lloyds and supported by British Business Bank and Greater Birmingham & Solihull LEP, comprised a programme of panel discussions and keynote speeches, highlighting how we can all work together to create a more connected and effective finance ecosystem for businesses across the region.
The Summit, which featured a breakfast briefing on the new Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF), was attended by private investors, venture capitalists, angel investors, banks, crowdfunding and online platforms, debt and loan providers, and corporate investors.
Panel topics ranged from increasing the availability of smart angel capital for Midlands firms, to finance provision for the region’s tech sector. Key speakers included Simon Calver, UKBAA Chairman and Partner at BGF Ventures; Caroline Norbury, Chief Executive at Creative England; Goncalo de Vasconcelos, founder and CEO of SyndicateRoom; Tim Sawyer, Chief Investment Officer at InnovateUK; Bill Morrow, Founder and Chairman of AngelsDen; and Mike Grant, CEO and Chair of Warwick Audio.
In addition, five aspiring entrepreneurs from across the region showcased their businesses during live pitches. Pitching businesses included Algret Innovations, Autonomous Devices, Select Research, StaffCircle and Synapse Information.
The Summit also provided us with an opportunity to announce the establishment of a new Angel Hub for the region to provide an ongoing focal point for building the investment ecosystem.