Businesses in the South West are being helped to find loans and investors in Cornwall and across the UK.

Since launching in January 2021, Innovate UK EDGE has looked to drive growth across the South West, helping regional innovators to raise over £27m in equity investments and loans, and more than £13m in grant funding.

Ambitious businesses from Penzance to Cheltenham have worked with Innovate UK EDGE Finance Specialists to identify appropriate funding sources, become investment ready and submit high-quality grant applications.

In Cornwall, Roche-based British Lithium secured a £2.9m Innovate UK grant to build a pilot lithium extraction plant – following support from Innovate UK EDGE.

Roderick Smith, Chief Executive of British Lithium, said: "The support was absolutely vital.

"We knew nothing about the funding options out there and Innovate UK EDGE was extremely helpful in making the case for why we should consider applying for Innovate UK’s Smart Grants and SBRI."

Falmouth Packet: Innovate UK Edge has helped South West Businesses raise over £40m in loans and investments.Innovate UK Edge has helped South West Businesses raise over £40m in loans and investments.

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Across the South West, innovators have used the bespoke 1-2-1 support from Innovate UK EDGE to revamp their business strategies, boost sales through new marketing initiatives and introduce customer centric design principles.

In total, 540 businesses have accessed this support in 2021, with 190 entering new markets and 130 bringing new services to market – all following interventions from Innovate UK EDGE.

The subsequent growth has enabled these regional innovators to create 320 extra jobs in 2021.

Paul O’Collins, Manager of Innovate UK EDGE operations in the South West, said: "Innovate UK EDGE launched at a pivotal time for South West businesses with unprecedented restrictions on daily operations, new trading relationships with the world and major skills and supply chain shortages.

"We’ve reacted by delivering game-changing growth support that’s tailored to the needs of individual businesses across all areas of the economy.

"Going into 2022, Innovate UK EDGE will continue to provide game-changing growth support to all innovation led businesses, helping them to scale rapidly and improve our region’s standing in the global economy."

To find out how Innovate UK EDGE can support your business with bespoke, funded growth support, visit their website.