National investor FDC approves £100m for businesses in record 2021

FDC is celebrating a record 2021 after approving almost £100million of investment for businesses across the UK

National debt investor Frontier Development Capital (“FDC”) is celebrating a record 2021 after approving almost £100million of investment for businesses across the UK.

The landmark year saw FDC, which supports mid-market SME businesses and property developers across the country with debt funding between £1m and £20m, approve 31 deals totalling £98.7million in 2021. More than three times the funding it approved in 2020, FDC’s 2021 results signal strong demand and uptake from firms for alternative debt investment to support their growth plans following the uncertainties of the pandemic.

Sue Summers, CEO of Frontier Development Capital, said:

“This is a landmark year for FDC, one that highlights our steadfast commitment to investing in all UK regions and supporting established SMEs - the lifeblood of our national economy - to harness their potential and take their growth to new levels. Throughout 2021, we saw a real renewed energy and impetus from businesses seeking finance, as uncertainty surrounding the pandemic and a challenging economic climate reduced.”

The West Midlands saw the highest level of investment with £66.7m committed to the region in 2021. This included support for an innovative pilot scheme named ‘Help to Own’ in partnership with Wolverhampton City Council and the West Midlands Combined Authority. With soaring house prices - increasing by 11.8% annually (Gov.UK) - ‘Help to Own’ is a deposit free scheme that allows residents to rent a property for 25 years before being able to purchase it for £1. The project has been hailed as an innovative solution to the housing crisis, providing a blueprint for other regions.

In-line with its focus on established SMEs and property developers, commercial and residential property deals accounted for 60 per cent of its total approved investments in 2021, led by commercial with £47.2m, and £10m for residential. Recent highlights include a £6m investment to build Minworth Industrial Park - a redevelopment of a derelict Birmingham steel works, expected to create 140 new jobs, alongside Abbotts Lane, Coventry, a large-scale brownfield-site regeneration scheme set to deliver 700-homes.

Summers continued:

“Interest in investment from the property sector, was remained consistent throughout 2021, as the market bounced back and both the public and private sector looked to harness opportunities. We’re proud that our investments will enable the repurposing of 17 acres of brownfield land, while initiatives like Help to Own are paving the way for innovative housing delivery.

“Our pragmatic and flexible approach to debt finance and deal structures has allowed us to build impactful, long-term partnerships with our clients across all sectors in both new and established markets. We look forward to building on our record results for 2021 in 2022.”

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