Cash aid for Newcastle-based tech firm Activ

North East business technology provider Activ has secured investment to help it double both its workforce and turnover within the next year

(from left) Chris Parker of NEL, Michael Fitzpatrick of Activ, Amy Wanless of Muckle LLP, Mark Simpson of UNW and Ian Gillespie of Activ
(from left) Chris Parker of NEL, Michael Fitzpatrick of Activ, Amy Wanless of Muckle LLP, Mark Simpson of UNW and Ian Gillespie of Activ

An expanding North East business technology provider has secured investment from the Finance For Business North East Growth Fund to help it double both its workforce and turnover within the next year.

Activ provides comprehensive telecoms and technology solutions to small and medium-sized businesses across and outside the North East, and works with the communications industry’s leading providers to develop individual solutions to clients’ business technology needs.

The independent Newcastle-based business initially focused on mobile communications, and has widened the range of services it provides in the last three years to include fixed line calls and lines, broadband, hardware provision and IT infrastructure supply, installation and maintenance.

To help support the firm’s service expansion plans, Activ has now secured a substantial six-figure investment from regional fund management firm NEL Fund Managers, which administers the Growth Fund, with support on the deal being provided by long-term business advisers UNW and law firm Muckle LLP.

Activ managing director Michael Fitzpatrick said: “Finalising a deal of this type is always about the people involved. The NEL team took the time to understand the business, and their professional, helpful approach, along with the strong support we received from UNW and Muckle, helped us manage the thorough investment process while staying properly focused on running the company.

“We’re confident that doubling both our 29-strong workforce to over 50, and our annual turnover in the next 12 months are realistic targets, and believe we now have the resources that will help us achieve these goals.”

UNW corporate finance senior manager Mark Simpson added: “Activ is recognised in the market as being the expert in mobile communications.

“This funding will allow them to press ahead with their ambitious plans into these different spaces, which is great news.”

Craig Swinhoe, a partner in Muckle LLP’s corporate team, said: “We pride ourselves on strong relationships with our clients and have been with the Activ business from inception, having previously worked with Ian and Michael on other businesses. We very much appreciate the loyalty which Ian, Michael and the Gillespie family has shown to this firm.”

Aimed at regional businesses which are at a development and growth stage, the Growth Fund forms part of the wider Finance for Business North East Fund.

Managed by North East Finance, it will see £125m of investment capital injected into the region by the European Investment Bank and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) 2007-13 over a five-year period.

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