Growth funding for six of the best of Bath’s fledgling hi-tech, digital and IT firms

February 10, 2014

Six Bath hi-tech firms have received investment totalling nearly £400,000 from a regional growth fund to help them develop their pioneering products.

The businesses – Neighbourly, Clean Energy, Citeab, Tivarri, Envolve Technologies and CloudFind – are based at the city’s SETsquared centre, which supports small, fast-growing innovative businesses, mainly in the hi-tech sector.

Centre director Simon Bond said: “I’m delighted that our companies have benefitted from this investment by the West of England Growth Fund – the grants will now leverage additional multi-million pound private investments into these companies.”   

Total investments worth £2m were announced from the £25m fund, was set up last year to support businesses in the region, creating or safeguarding jobs and driving economic growth.

Some £11.85m has already been awarded from the fund. The £2m of investments announced today for small hi-tech firms is a significant statement of confidence in the sector, which has been prioritised by the West of England Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) for its massive potential to deliver growth.

Neighbourly – – which received £94,000, is a social network that connects community projects and companies that want to make a difference.

Clean Energy – – (£27,000) is an innovative marine renewables company developing a low-cost, efficient and modular wave energy capture device.

CiteAb – – (£26,000), the world’s largest antibody search engine, has successfully disrupted the antibody search market since its launch. The company is on a mission to help scientists save time and money, making research easier.

Tivarri – – enables businesses to benefit from operating their IT in the Cloud, without them needing to change working practices, operating systems or applications. No details of its investment were announced.

Envolve Technologies – – (£132,000) runs myEnvolve – a free community engagement tool that brings together public service providers, voluntary sector organisations and community groups to jointly engage with the whole community.

CloudFind – – (£90,000) is developing new software technology that helps businesses find, share and organise related files from cloud stores like Google Drive or Dropbox.

LEP chief executive Paul Wilson said: “Through this fund we have already invested around £14m, which has attracted more than £41m of private sector investment into the local economy, creating or safeguarding over 1,500 jobs. Hi-tech is a significant area of growth for us – we already compete internationally and our region is nurturing a future generation of hi-tech businesses.”

SETsquared in Bath is hosted by the University of Bath Innovation Centre (UBIC), a membership organisation for high-growth potential businesses and the entrepreneurs, innovators and researchers that create them. Through its SETsquared partnership it provides world-class business support services to start-ups, as well as flexible office and co-working space to work from.

UBIC, which is part of the University of Bath’s Research Development & Support Office, has helped its members to create 500 jobs and raise £50m in investment from ventures capitalists and business.

The Bath investments – and six made to firms based at SETsquared in Bristol – were announced to coincide with a visit by the Duke of York on Monday to Bristol SETsquared, where he met some of the businesses.

Bristol SETsquared director Nick Sturge added: “Bristol and Bath has some fantastic tech businesses – in software, internet technology, electronics, semiconductor, biotech and across all sorts of sectors. These awards will make a massive impact into jobs growth here – and SETsquared has a track record of businesses growing steadily without failing, so these are high-value, sustainable jobs.”


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