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Optimum Finance to join government's Innovate UK Scaleup Programme

9 November 2021
The Business Magazine article image for: Optimum Finance to join government's Innovate UK Scaleup Programme

Specialist invoice finance provider, Optimum Finance, has been accepted onto the UK government’s Innovate UK Scaleup Programme. The programme supports a select group of companies on a journey to exponential growth. The initiative will help Bristol-based Optimum Finance scale up on to help more UK SMEs gain access to funding.

The programme is designed to support highly innovative, ambitious, high-growth oriented companies already on their scaling journey, whose innovations or business models can disrupt an existing market, and who are establishing or already implementing their international markets strategy. High-impact engagement and early-stage outcomes can include access to finance, investment readiness or internationalisation plans.

Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation, a non-departmental public body funded by a grant-in-aid from the UK government. Since 2007, they have invested around £2.5 billion to help businesses across the country to innovate, with match funding from industry taking the total value of projects above £4.3 billion.

At the centre of the service is a team of high calibre scaleup directors who operate together as a board and provide each of the companies on the programme with a matrix of skills and connectivity. The scaleup directors will support Optimum Finance structure itself for global growth and work with them to understand the particular set of needs that it faces on its scaling journey.

Optimum Finance was accepted onto the programme, following a rigorous three-stage screening process, due to its innovative and ambitious future plans for the invoice finance market. CEO Ant Persse commented “This is a huge win for Optimum. We have big plans for how businesses can access the funding they need for day to day running and growth, driven by improved service and technology. We’re reinventing invoice finance with simplicity, speed and convenience at the heart of what we do. To be described as having the potential for exponential growth is fantastic and Innovate UK will accelerate us towards our future plans and products.”

Maxine Adam, Head of Business Growth at Innovate UK, said: “Our work with the Optimum Finance team is a great example of just how much value this programme can add to the endeavours of the business leaders we support. The inputs are varied and blend strategic thinking with invaluable hands-on tactical guidance, to create outcomes that deliver real commercial advantage. It’s a pleasure working with Ant and the team at Optimum at this pivotal time for their business.”

Speaking about the programme, she added: “Admission onto the Scaleup Programme is a rigorous and highly selective process. To be eligible, selectors look for innovative, ambitious, high-growth oriented companies that are already on their scaling journey. Optimum Finance is a perfect candidate in this respect and, together with EEN, we are looking forward to helping them scale up, drive growth, and realise their potential as a high-performing and world leading business”.

Nicky Godding is editor of The Business Magazine. Before her journalism career, she worked mainly in public relations moving into writing when she was invited to launch Retail Watch, a publication covering retail and real estate across Europe.

After some years of constant travelling, she tucked away her passport and concentrated on business writing, co-founding a successful regional business magazine. She has interviewed some of the UK’s most successful entrepreneurs who have built multi-million-pound businesses and reported on many science and technology firsts.

She reports on the region’s thriving business economy from start-ups, family businesses and multi-million-pound corporations, to the professionals that support their growth and the institutions that educate the next generation of business leaders.

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