Barclays Announces New High Growth & Entrepreneurs Drive

Barclays is launching a new commitment to support UK scale-ups and their founders, helping them to rapidly grow and in turn help create thousands of new jobs for the UK economy.

The new proposition, ‘Barclays High Growth and Entrepreneurs’ is in direct response to the Britain’s scale up gap, and will help the UK compete on the global stage.

‘High-growth’ firms are often referred to as scale-ups, and typically project annual growth of over 20 per cent over the next three years. It is estimated that this nascent sector created over 230,000 jobs last year.*

Under the new Barclays commitment for High Growth & Entrepreneurs:

  • A dedicated team of 50 Barclays High Growth & Entrepreneur Relationship Directors has been created across the UK to support high-growth companies from start-ups, to scale up to IPO. The new team is in addition to the thousands of SME, Corporate banking and Wealth managers across the country, who will also actively seek out and refer entrepreneurs for specialist support. A further 13 specialist High Growth Credit Sanctioners will support the lending needs of high growth businesses
  • Two new dedicated funds totalling £150million have been set up to specifically help innovative companies under Barclays’ High Growth Venture Debt Fund and InnovFin finance. 13 Venture Debt transactions have been completed to date. These funds ensure that fast-growing firms in the UK do not miss out in comparison to US counterparts.
  • Over 200 of Barclays most senior leaders from Barclays Personal and Corporate Banking have completed a tailored training programme with Cambridge Judge Business School to better understand the financial needs of entrepreneurs.
  • The bank is also exploring how it can potentially utilise space in Barclays premises for early stage scale-up companies to co-locate, collaborate with peers and get expert advice.

Launching the new drive Ashok Vaswani, Chief Executive of Barclays Personal & Corporate Banking, said: “It’s imperative that the financial system in the UK is able to fully back brave entrepreneurs who create jobs and unlock new advances.Barclays financed the world’s first steam railway in 1819, which went on to bring about the industrial revolution. By giving expert support to today’s entrepreneurs we can help the UK to win in the digital revolution. We want to be the financial partner for high-growth firms and the people behind them – giving them support across every step of their journey.”

Mr Vaswani has appointed Richard Heggie as Barclays’ Head of High-Growth and Entrepreneurs to spearhead this drive. Richard, said: “Barclays has a strong track record in supporting scale up businesses and is uniquely placed to help and support ambitious businesses and their founders at all stages of growth, particularly during scale up but also at IPO and exit stage. No other UK institution can offer this end-to-end support and through our newly created relationship team we are providing access to a range of innovative funding, services and networks for the most ambitious businesses driving economic growth.

“We believe the industry needs to do more to support this segment and the $1billion+ companies of tomorrow. We are leading the way by building a dedicated support programme for high-growth firms. Our ambition is for the UK to fully compete with Silicon Valley to attract and retain the most revolutionary businesses.”

Barclays will also be partnering with Youth Business International for Global Entrepreneurship Week starting on 16th November 2015.

This activity builds on Barclays’ global launch of Rise – a network of physical spaces and a virtual community designed to work with innovative start-ups to pioneer the future of financial technology. Barclays currently has Rise hubs in London, Manchester and New York, with sites in Cape Town and Tel Aviv opening soon. Rise is also home to the Barclays Accelerator, a start-up programme for fintech businesses in conjunction with Techstars, which has already supported several companies in driving innovation in financial services.

By UKBAA 11 Nov 2015