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Rishi Sunak to unveil £150m cash pot for angel investors

With the next annual Budget set to be announced on Wednesday, Chancellor Rishi Sunak faces the problem of balancing a host of issues relating to the pandemic. Backing very early-stage companies with no strings cash seems to be one solution.

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HM Treasury

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak will announce £150m of funding for a regional UK angel investor programme in his annual budget on Wednesday.

The cash will be delivered to help boost small businesses outside of London and ensure new companies get access to the early stage funding they need to get off the ground and grow.

Angel investing has become increasingly fashionable in recent years as the tech boom has crystalised into lucrative exits for founders and early employees.

Nonetheless, owing to the sense money is too concentrated in London and the southeast of England, a British Business Bank scheme was set up to invest in more regional businesses. The Regional Angels Programme was set up in 2019 following the government's Patient Capital Review.

The new funding, which more than doubles the amount of cash made available to the scheme, will likely mean hundreds of more firms are see investment at an early stage. More than 200 have been beneficiaries so far of c.£100m of money from the Treasury two years ago.

Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak said: “As we level up the country it’s vital that we harness the skills and talents of everyone, not just those who live in London and the South East.

“Small businesses are the lifeblood of our towns and cities up and down the UK, but all too often those based in the regions miss out on the backing of the investors they need. This extra funding will help budding entrepreneurs and develop networks of angel investors across the UK.”

Romi Savova, Founder and CEO of PensionBee said: With a substantial proportion of our own workforce and customer base distributed around Britain, at PensionBee we know that talent is spread widely, yet funding for innovative ideas is not. This additional funding will act as a caffeine shot for underrepresented founders across our regions and diverse communities, helping them to play a key role in growing our economy for the benefit of all.”

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