Launched last week the Aspire Fund - a £25 million investment fund for women-led businesses - will be jointly funded by the Government and private sector.
The Aspire Investment Fund is the first of its kind and will receive over £12.5 million in funding from the Department for Business to be matched by a further £12.5 million from private sector investment.
The fund will act as a beacon to encourage women with businesses to seek appropriate equity finance and will also demonstrate to the business community what investment opportunities already exist from businesses being run by women.
The Fund will be accessed via Business Link and managed by Capital for Enterprise Limited. The fund follows on from a commitment made in the Government's Enterprise Strategy to further promote and support the development of women's enterprise. It is aimed at high growth businesses seeking an investment of between £100,000 and £2 million to help finance growth.
Minister for Economic Competitiveness and Small Business, Shriti Vadera said:
"There are 20% more people in enterprise in the US than in Britain, and the majority of that gap is made up of women. Getting more women entrepreneurs is an economic issue not just an equality issue. If we were to match US levels of women's enterprise there would be 900,000 new businesses in the UK.
"There is a wealth of untapped talent and economic opportunity that could significantly boost the economy in these uncertain times. The Women's Investment Fund marks the Government's strong commitment to support women in business".
Co-Chairs of the Women's Enterprise Task Force (WETF), Pam Alexander and Glenda Stone added:
"The Women's Enterprise Task Force welcomes the launch of the Aspire Fund, which will help address a key funding gap for women entrepreneurs. As co-chairs of the Task Force, we look forward to working closely with BERR and CfEL to make this fund a success and to build on existing initiatives supporting women business owners."
To find out more about the fund contact Business Link on 0845 600 9 006
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