Belfast-based IT services firm CMI has doubled its staff numbers to 50 and grown turnover to £5m, since receiving funding from the Growth Loan Fund in 2014.
Finance for the £55m Growth Loan Fund – which provides loans to established Northern Ireland SMEs seeking to access growth finance – was provided by Invest Northern Ireland and private investors, Northern Ireland Local Government Officers’ Superannuation Committee (NILGOSC).
CMI, which was formed in 2009, designs and implements IT structures to SMEs and mid-market companies across England and Ireland. The company also provides IT support to users across the world.
Ken Roulston, Managing Director at CMI, said: “The business was at a stage where we wanted to grow but didn’t have the right financial backing. The Growth Loan Fund was a key accelerator for our business and the Whiterock team really bought into our vision from day one.
“We received funding of £125,000 in 2014 with a further £200,000 in 2016. The loans provided the working capital the business needed following two acquisitions in England and the doubling of our staff numbers to 50. We were turning over £2m in 2014 and thanks to the funding, we have increased that to £5m with the goal of reaching £10m in the next 12-18 months.”
He added: “We’re in a position now were we want to consolidate the business and prepare for future growth. Our recent growth has been organic, but we’ll be looking to complete further acquisitions over the next 12 months.”
Andrew Gowdy, Head of Property and Commercial Finance at Whiterock Finance said: “CMI is a prime example of the type of scalable company the Growth Loan Fund was set up to support. Through strategic acquisitions, CMI has been able to increase its market share across England while providing support to users around the world.
“We’re delighted to have played a part in CMI’s growth story and wish the business all the best for the future.”
WhiteRock Capital Partners LLP, which is authorised and regulated by the FCA, was established in 2012 to manage the Fund and is owned by WhiteRock Finance Limited and Clarendon Fund Managers.
Companies seeking funding from the Growth Loan Fund must be based in Northern Ireland, demonstrating growth and generally be in the manufacturing, engineering or tradable services sectors.
The loans provided are expected to be complementary to existing sources of finance, including banks, trade finance sources and equity investors. Loans are provided on a fully commercial basis, with monthly loan repayments required over typically a five-year term. For more information about the Growth Loan Fund’s criteria please visit www.whiterockfinance.co.uk
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