Tuesday, April 25, 2017

News: LEP invests £25m in growing businesses


The Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) has invested £25m to support growing local companies and inward investors of strategic significance, playing their part in the recent net jobs growth in the private sector - the first time growth has been seen in the city region in a generation.

Secured through the Growth Deals with central government, a £52m fund was established that built on the £32m "Unlocking Business Investment" programme, which was over-subscribed and created around 2,000 sustainable, private sector jobs.

Using part of the £350m Local Growth Fund (LGF) allocation, the Business Investment Fund uses funding for companies demonstrating growth or potential to grow, creating new jobs.

To date, £25m has been allocated to 24 projects, this is in addition to 129 projects as part of the previous Regional Growth Fund Programme.

Headline investments include the £12m commitment to supercar manufacturer, McLaren which has helped to secure a £50m project for the city region's emerging Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District (AMID).

Planning permission has recently been secured for a 75,000 sq ft development on the Advanced Manufacturing Park (AMP) in Rotherham that will enable McLaren to open a multimillion pound Composites Technology Centre.

The centre is set to create more than 200 jobs and will comprise approximately 150 production staff and 50 manufacturing support staff.


Another high profile deal is the Shefield City Region Combined Authority recently agreeing a £5.75m grant from the Business Investment Fund to support the establishment of a production facility by Boeing.

The new facility, the result of a Boeing investment of more than £20m, will be Boeing's first manufacturing facility in Europe. It will employ approximately 30 people but has "strategic significance," not least because of Boeing's global recognition but in the 104 supply-chain jobs that are expected to be created as a result of the move.

Other investments include Doncaster-Sheffield Airport, Finance Yorkshire and Palamatic Ltd.
This investment is on course to support 1,500 direct jobs and many more in the local supply chain.

The LEP has set itself a target of supporting 30,000 high value jobs and 6,000 new businesses and the latest figures show that the city region is already outperforming these ambitious targets. The LEP and Combined Authoritiy programmes have already unlocked 15,900 jobs and levered over £315m of private sector investment.

Through the Growth Hub, the city region offers an Access to Finance service which enables companies to identify and access private and public funding opportunities.

An update to the LEP Board on the Business Investment Fund indicates that there are more investment projects on the way. It states: "The pipeline of the programme remains strong, and there is emerging pressure on the 2017/18 budget. In due course, steps may need to be taken to bring forward funds from 2020/2021 into 2017/18, especially if another of the inward investment project in the pipeline comes to fruition."

SCR Growth Hub website
Sheffield City Region LEP website

Images: McLaren / Boeing


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