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Edge’s £40m boost to UK’s creative economy

Edge Investments raises £40m funding to invest in high-growth companies within the creative industries.

By IQ on 17 Dec 2015

David Glick

Edge Investments has raised £40million (€55.4m) in funding, with UK Government support, to invest in high-growth companies in the creative industries.

The company’s new Edge Creative Enterprise Fund brings together private sector finances from leading institutions and high net-worth individuals, with a significant investment from the Government’s British Business Bank.

Edge will use the money to nurture and assist creative businesses. By their nature, many of these companies start with a small number of employees, and a high degree of entrepreneurial flair. Edge says it will provide the crucial capital and mentoring skills to stimulate growth and innovation at these firms. In this way, it will create growth and returns for both the management teams of its portfolio companies and its investors.

“The creative industries are one of the UK’s great success stories, an area where Britain excels,” notes Edge Investments CEO, David Glick. “Our view is that a high degree of sector knowledge mitigates risk and also allows us to assess the most promising opportunities and most talented executives.”

The creative and cultural economy is an important part of the global economy, and Britain’s creative industries sector is thriving – accounting for approximately 10% of the entire UK economy and providing 2.55 million jobs. Indeed, in terms of employment, the sector is growing four times faster than the economy as a whole.

Edge has already had a great deal of success in the live entertainment sector and it’s likely that a proportion of the £40m will be invested in the music business. The company’s previous investments have included live events featuring Jennifer Lopez, Eric Clapton, Leonard Cohen and the Rolling Stones.

The fund is targeting a minimum three times return for its private investors over its seven- to ten-year life. “There are nearly 160,000 creative industries businesses in Britain, yet despite being in this high-growth sector, many of them find it difficult to attract adequate capital to maximise their potential. Our new Edge Creative Enterprise Fund aims to fill that funding gap,” says Glick. “[It] will bring much-needed growth capital to smaller businesses in the creative industries, and we are grateful to the British Business Bank and all the fund’s investors for their support.”

Ken Cooper, MD of venture capital solutions at British Business Bank, adds, “This is the first fund specifically focused on the creative industries backed by the British Business Bank. We look forward to working with Edge Investments, which has extensive experience in this sector and a proven track record. The creative industry is of increasing importance to the wider UK economy and we are particularly pleased that this fund will ensure these high-growth businesses have access to the finance they need to scale.”