Cllr Julia Rostron, third left, meets the FW team. Credit: Middlesbrough Council

Property opportunities in new £20m Teesside fund

Launching the Teesside Flexible Investment Fund, FW Capital said that money from repayments and exits will be recycled into new deals, providing a potential total investment of £68m.

Designed by FW Capital with investment from the Teesside Pension Fund, the fund will support economic development in Hartlepool, Middlesbrough, Stockton-on-Tees and Redcar & Cleveland, addressing identified funding gaps in the region.

The fund will back projects through a mix of property development funding, contract-related bond finance and finance to support management teams in buying a business.

This provision of loan and equity packages to support management buy-outs and the transfer of ownership is a first for the company.

The Teesside Flexible Investment Fund can be used for a variety of business needs including:

  • Loans from £250,000 to £3m for residential and non-speculative commercial developments. Providing up to 100% of build costs for suitable schemes with repayment terms available up to three years.
  • Loans from £100,000 to £2m for contract-related bonds including advance payment guarantees, performance, warranty, highways and water authority bonds. Repayment terms are available of up to two years.
  • Loans and equity investments from £250,000 to £3m for management teams seeking to own and run their own business. Investments are available between 1-7 years.

FW Capital said the fund will build on the success of its previous investment activities in the region. FW  is one of the UK’s largest regional fund managers and has a strong record of supporting businesses in the North East. In Teesside alone, the company has invested close to £38m into 62 companies since 2013.

The new fund will follow the success of the Tees Valley Catalyst Fund, which FW Capital ran on behalf of the Tees Valley Combined Authority and ended in 2023. This provided bond finance, facilitating contracts of £78m across Teesside.

The new fund will also allow FW Capital to support property developers in Teesside, using its experience in funding residential and non-speculative commercial developments in other areas of the North East.

Joanne Whitfield, fund director at FW Capital, said: “There’s lots going on in the Teesside area with exciting plans for regeneration and this new fund will unlock much-needed finance for small to medium-sized enterprises and provide valuable investment for the future. We’ve a proven track record of supporting local businesses and have seen first-hand how important it is to have the right backing.

“We’ve specifically created a fund that supports a variety of needs to match the diversity we are seeing across the region. Businesses know us for providing property development funding and bond finance in the North East and we are excited to be expanding our offering into supporting management teams looking to buy a business. SMEs are the lifeblood of our region and it’s crucial to retain this pool of talent and expertise. Assisting the transition of business ownership to new management teams safeguards this legacy for the future.”

Cllr Julia Rostron, chair of the Teesside Pension Fund committee, said: “FW Capital has been investing in local business and enterprise for over a decade, and has played a key role in supporting growth and generating prosperity.

“The new Flexible Investment Fund in partnership with the Teesside Pension Fund will build on that work with SMEs which will deliver much-needed new opportunities for further growth and the creation of high-quality, sustainable jobs.”

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