UK Creative Sector Boosted by £11m of Investment from Creative Growth Finance

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We are thrilled to have invested over £11m into the UK’s Creative Sector as we enter the fourth and final year of our Creative Growth Finance fund. Creative Growth Finance is a landmark investment fund providing vital scale up finance to the UK’s most promising creative businesses with loans of £100,000 to £1million.  

Since its inception in 2019, Creative Growth Finance, whose fund partner is Triodos Bank has invested over £11.8 million into 25 companies operating across the Creative Industries. Recipients of the fund include companies from across the UK regions including a wide breadth of sectors such as Film & TV Production, Immersive Media and SaaS. 

2021/22 has been the fund’s most successful year, with over £7m of investment made into new portfolio additions. The companies that have joined the CGF portfolio include long-standing Manchester virtual production studio, Carbon Digital, founded in 1998; Dimension Studio, whose projects include Disney’s Pinocchio; and sport entertainment brand SBX Entertainment, a Welsh company focussing on social impact. 

Despite operating through the pandemic, the fund has remained strong, with clients experiencing an average 99% improvement in monthly revenues after joining the portfolio. It also remains ambitious and continues to seek out the most exciting and growth-focussed companies currently operating in the UK’s Creative Sector. 

Caroline Norbury OBE, CEO of Creative UK, said:  

“In this age of austerity, we want businesses to know our Creative Growth Finance fund is available to help propel the very best of talent and innovation across our amazing Creative Industries. At Creative UK, investments are about much more than just money. When we supply finance to a company, we become part of their growth story and that means that we do all we can to support them in realising their ambitions. Four years on, we can truly see the strength and impact of the fund across some of our portfolio companies. From Dimension doubling their revenues to Carbon Digital bringing ground-breaking tech to Coronation Street, time and again we are seeing our portfolio outdo themselves and shine a much-deserved light onto their sectors. I can’t wait to see what the next 12 months brings for the fund and our existing portfolio.” 

Tim Evans, Investment Director, Creative UK, said: 

“I couldn’t be prouder of the performance of our portfolio. Creative Growth Finance was put together with the aim of supporting and propelling the UK’s most exciting Creative Sector companies to further boost this incredible industry. The companies we have invested in are making waves across a range of sectors, from architecture through to immersive tech and animation. 2022 has been a particularly exciting year for our portfolio. Moonraker is releasing its fulldome film, Moonbase: The Next Step, FuturLab’s breakout game, PowerWash Simulator came to console and Dimension’s virtual production work on Disney’s Pinnochio was a huge success with its release in September. We’re now in the final year of the fund and I have full confidence we will see even greater successes. 

Sue McHugh, Founder, Carbon Digital said: 

“In a time when everyone was pausing and holding back on projects, we knew we needed to be brave when we set out to source funding to grow in a new direction. We also knew we needed to work with an investor who understood our business and the huge potential for virtual production. The past 12 months has seen us enable a brand-new offering in a rapidly growing market and we are now established as one of the few Northwest virtual production studios offering a turn-key service. The funding, support and time has enabled us to win some landmark clients over multiple genres including ITV’s Coronation Street and McCann Craft commercials” 

Simon Windsor, co-CEO, Dimension commented 

“Momentum continues apace in 3D real-time content production, with Dimension seeing ever-expanding opportunities for virtual content. Creative UK has been a longstanding ally and investor in our business, supporting our efforts to innovate and advance production for next generation storytelling, helping to ensure our team is at the forefront of realistic avatar creation, web3 entertainment, and virtual production. This year we continue to see game-changing creative projects launch as a result of Creative Growth Finance support.” 

Tom Connors, Managing Director, SBX Entertainment added: 

“It’s truly awesome to have Creative UK on board as a strategic investor, as SBX has extreme potential to grow and dominate our sector. With their support, we’re now able to expand our commitment to urban sports world and help provide a full circle of activations and activities. This dynamic sports team not only inspires people of all ages to embrace exercise and physical activity but offers a unique platform and partnership opportunity for global brands, blue-chip corporations, charities, local councils, schools, sports clubs, and the holiday industry to team up with the world-class talent and players who epitomize SBX. We strongly believe that our urban entertainers help pave the way for mass participation in these sports. We look forward to continuing our journey with the financial support of Creative UK. “ 

Click here For further information on Creative Growth Finance and the fund’s eligibility criteria. 

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Creative UK is the national network for the Creative Industries. We are an independent membership organisation that champions the value of the Creative Industries. We know that talent is everywhere, but opportunity is not. Creative UK connects talent, business and organisations across the Creative Industries; from arts and culture, film and TV and video games to design, publishing and architecture and everything in between. At Creative UK, we support companies and people working in the creative sector by offering development opportunities at a local and national level, through our network of partners across the UK. We invest by identifying untapped potential to accelerate growth, providing tailor made resources and financial expertise. We do all of this because we believe in the power of creativity to change lives.  

We are one of the UK’s leading Creative Industries investors and a strategic investment partner for growth-minded creative businesses. Creative Growth Finance is a landmark fund providing vital scale up finance to the UK’s most promising creative businesses, partnering with Triodos Bank to offer flexible capital financings of £100,000 to £1million. 

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