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Businesses need cash wherever they are on their life cycle. From the smallest start-up to the largest Multi National Corporation, ongoing investment is vital to maintain momentum.

Seedling businesses need liquid funds to enable start up, get plans in action and provide support in the period before income streams come on line. Ambitious, growing companies will often require further investment at subsequent stages to fuel growth and to take opportunities presented by their markets or customers.

Exwold Technology Ltd has benefitted from UKSE support on two separate occasions. The first was in the form of a small unsecured loan. This allowed the company to invest in processing equipment that was needed to take advantage of a new contract. The experience we had in securing this loan was very positive and even after its completion the relationship between the two organisations was maintained.

The second event required a more significant amount of financial support and we were keen to discuss alternative finance options. UKSE has significant experience of equity finance and were an ideal partner for the Exwold management team.

This route of financing has several benefits to a growing business. Clearly the financial angle is the key driver but equally important can be the business support provided by the equity investor. By definition, the investor has an interest in the growth of the enterprise and will have a desire to assist the management team to deliver the target outcomes. Through this approach there is a high degree of likelihood that the aims of the business will be aligned with the aspirations of the investor.

Many SMEs may have concerns about the level of interference an external investor may wish to have in the way a business is run or operated.  This is understandable as there will be a worry that some degree of control may have to be given up. An enterprise that has emerged from the ideas of one person or a small group may not wish to have pressure exerted from elsewhere to do things differently.

Exwold’s experience with UKSE has been far from this. The team at UKSE provide direction and support as and when needed, offer critical assessments when difficult decisions need to be made and offer support in a constructive way. Many growing firms would benefit from having the skills available to them that the UKSE investment brings; skills that would be difficult to source and be costly.

As Exwold continues to grow and develop, further investment may be needed and UKSE will hopefully be part of that – helping us to maintain that vital momentum.  

Kevin Martin
Author: Kevin Martin
Kevin Martin is Managing Director of UKSE client, Exwold Technology - a contract chemical processing company based in the North East of the UK. Exwold (www.exwold.com) specialises in formulation and processing for the crop protection and speciality chemicals markets. Here Kevin talks about the benefits of an investment from UKSE.