Half-year results for the Development Bank of Wales

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More than 200 Welsh businesses have benefitted from 239 investments totalling £51 million from the Development Bank of Wales in the first half year of 2023/24 with private co-investment of an extra £26.6 million taking total economic impact to £77.7 million.

The latest data shows 1,718 jobs have been created or safeguarded. 30% of customers have benefitted from streamlined fast track loans allowing businesses to take advantage of growth opportunities such as investing in more stock or new equipment. 48 of the investments year to date have been for start-ups and 47 have gone to young entrepreneurs aged 30 and under as the Development Bank continues to focus on supporting an entrepreneurial culture in Wales.

With a remit to serve the whole of Wales, 85% of the Bank’s investments have gone to businesses outside the Cardiff area with West Wales and the Valleys having benefited from £13.8 million through the ERDF-financed, £216 million Wales Business Fund. The fund is on track to be fully invested at the end of this calendar year.

With conditions hard to predict and businesses finding their growth plans being affected, Chief Executive Giles Thorley says that the need for long-term investment and sustainable growth is more important than ever. He said: “Our role is to support Welsh business with an ongoing supply of debt and equity finance to enable economic growth while creating a positive social impact by making sure that Welsh businesses can access the funding that they need to prosper.

“Ongoing economic uncertainty remains evident the length and breadth of Wales as businesses continue to juggle increased operational costs, supply chain delays and competition for skills and talent. By providing the right investment at the right time, we can support the long-term sustainability of our customers, from seed, early stage or start-ups to more established businesses as well as succession transactions.

“I am encouraged by our figures for the first half of the current financial year, many of which match or exceed our performance at the same point last year. I’m particularly pleased that our new Green Business Loan Scheme is performing well and that there is a strong pipeline of interest from Welsh businesses wanting to make the transition to net zero.

“Our dedicated Investment Executives will remain focussed on society and financial inclusion so that our funds continue to make a real difference the length and breadth of Wales.”