Two Scottish firms join list of 515 companies in which the Future Fund has an equity stake

Two Scottish firms join list of 515 companies in which the Future Fund has an equity stake

Ken Cooper

Two Scottish companies have joined the British Business Bank’s Future Fund, revealed by the published list of 53 additional companies in which the bank holds an equity stake, taking the total to 515 as at end of December 2022.

Companies in which Future Fund is now a shareholder include Edinburgh-based Roslin Technologies, a biotech company improving protein production for cultivated meat and the transition towards more sustainable food systems, and Phlo Technologies, an online pharmacy business headquartered in Glasgow.

The shift to equity ownership comes as the bank converted loans given to the firms to equity stakes.

Launched in May 2020, the Future Fund has supported UK companies that typically rely on equity investment to fund their growth.

By creating a bridge to the next equity funding round, the Future Fund supported these companies through a period of considerable economic disruption and now the recovery.

Ken Cooper, managing director of venture solutions at the British Business Bank, said: “The Future Fund was created to ensure a flow of capital, at the height of the pandemic, to companies that would otherwise have been unable to access government support schemes, while ensuring long-term value for the UK taxpayer.

“We are pleased to see so many of those companies now going on to raise further private sector capital, which will allow the Future Fund to benefit from their continued growth.”

As at end of December 2022, there were 515 convertible loans that converted into equity shares and in respect of which the Future Fund continues to hold an equity interest.

The scheme used a recognised financial instrument known as a convertible loan. Unlike an equity investment, there wasn’t a requirement under the convertible loan to value the company or the price of its shares, at a time when company valuations had been significantly impacted by Covid-19. Instead, the convertible loans are designed to convert into equity at the next equity funding round, converting at a discount to the price per share agreed between companies and investors in the funding round.

The British Business Bank will update the list of companies in which Future Fund has a shareholding at the end of each financial quarter – the full list is available here.

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