Scottish National Investment Bank celebrates investments of £194m after first full year of operations

Scottish National Investment Bank celebrates investments of £194m after first full year of operations

Sarah Roughead

According to the Scottish National Investment Bank (SNIB), the first full year of operations for the Scottish Government-owned bank has been one of significant progress.

According to the lender, the bank’s team has been substantively recruited, many of its operational systems have been put in place, and since launch £194.4 million of investment has been committed across 14 mission-aligned investments in projects and businesses across the whole of Scotland.

Sarah Roughead, interim chief executive officer, said: “I am immensely proud of what the Bank has achieved in the last 12 months. The Bank has invested diversely and widely in the Scottish economy across all of the Bank’s three missions: achieving a just transition to net zero; extending equality of opportunity be improving places and harnessing innovation to enable the people of Scotland to flourish.

“Considerable progress has been made in investing in innovative and scaling businesses. The Bank has delivered direct investment from £1m to £30m and has co-invested alongside a number of private sector investors, leveraging additional capital. The Bank’s investments form part of investment rounds totalling £493.2m, demonstrating the scale of investment the bank is helping to achieve.

“The Bank has recruited a strong team against the backdrop of Covid-19 and is well positioned to embed the strong foundations it has built and to deliver its strategic objectives and further mission-aligned investments.’’

The bank’s ability to provide long-term and strategic growth capital can support Scotland’s businesses to scale up and unlock additional growth in the Scottish economy.

The Scottish Government’s recently published National Strategy for Economic Transformation underlined the importance of developing Scotland’s entrepreneurial ecosystem and the Bank’s investments to date have demonstrated its ability to contribute to that development, together with its mission alignment to the strategy’s ambition for a more productive and innovative Scotland.

Tourism technology business Travelnest is the latest company to benefit from the Bank’s support, receiving an initial £3m investment, supporting the Bank’s mission to invest in innovation and industries of the future.

The growth capital, alongside new funds from existing investors, will allow the Edinburgh based company to target new markets and increase its service offering.

Travelnest allows the owners of holiday homes to reach bigger audiences by pulling together multiple consumer booking channels into one place.

According to the SNIB, its investment will support the creation of high value jobs in the Scottish tech ecosystem, strengthening Scotland as an innovative hub for the next generation of entrepreneurs.

The bank’s scale up support will also help the business capitalise on the post pandemic recovery in travel and tourism internationally

Mark Munro, executive director, Sustainable Investment, added: “The Bank is delighted to be providing growth capital to a technology business based in Edinburgh. Travelnest is an exciting company in the travel technology sector with significant potential to scale up globally.

“The investment substantiates Edinburgh and Scotland as one of the UK’s fastest growing tech hubs and an incubator for technology businesses, aligning with the Bank’s innovation mission and supports key elements of the Scottish Technology and Ecosystem Review as well as the National Strategy for Economic Transformation initiatives by supporting an entrepreneurial-oriented technology business and the creation of skilled roles.”

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