The Enterprise Capital Funds programme

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Enterprise Capital Funds (ECFs) combine private and public money to make equity investments in high growth businesses. Our ECF programme aims to increase the supply of equity to UK growth companies and to lower the barriers to entry for fund managers looking to operate in the VC market.

The British Business Bank invests alongside venture capital funds on terms that improve the outcome for private investors when those funds are successful.

We do this to encourage venture capital funds to operate in a part of the market where smaller businesses are not able to access the growth capital they need.

Enterprise Capital Funds are managed by experienced fund managers from a variety of backgrounds – including teams from the venture capital industry as well as serial entrepreneurs with a history of success in building early stage UK companies.

We operate a rolling investment programme for commitments to new Enterprise Capital Funds.

Download our ECF Brochure and Infographic


Our ECF guidance and Draft Partnership Agreement help applicants to understand more about the British Business Bank investment process and whether or not their plans fit with the programme.

Download the ECF Guidance

Download the Draft Partnership Agreement

If you are a business looking for equity investment, please note that this programme is about helping to establish funds.

If you are looking for equity funding, you will need to approach the funds’ managers directly through our scale up pages accessible through the homepage.

We recently held a webinar for prospective fund managers, in July 2020. You can download the ECF Presentation slides and view the full Webinar on demand below:

Download the BBB ECF Webinar for Prospective Fund Manager presentation slides July 2020

Download the full webinar to watch on-demand

Read more about Active Partners and  Sussex Place Ventures’ experience of working with us and raising a fund, as a partner in our Enterprise Capital Funds programme.

ECF Performance

  • Since inception, more than £1.36bn (including third party) has been committed through the Enterprise Capital Funds programme (at end March 2020).
  • The ECF programme is a significant part of the UK venture capital industry, with 31 funds facilitating finance to more than 550 SMEs (as at end December 2019).

Latest ECF News

  • In November 2019, Ada Ventures held a first close of its debut fund at £27m with the British Business Bank committing £18m. The new fund is the Bank’s 30th ECF, with it targeting UK-based technology companies with a focus on supporting underrepresented founders.
  • In May 2019, Epidarex held the first close of Fund III. Epidarex subsequently held a final close at £102.1m with a £50m commitment from the British Business Bank. The new fund is the Bank’s 29th ECF, which will target early stage life science companies with a focus on university spin-outs in under ventured markets.
  • At Budget 2017 on 22 November, the Government committed to maintaining the British Business Bank’s ECF programme with up to £1bn of commitments over the next 10 years.

For the latest ECF news, follow us on Twitter @BritishBBank #BBBECF

The business finance guide - English version - guide to finance options    The business finance guide - Welsh version - guide to finance options
The English and Welsh language editions of the Business Finance Guide are downloadable from the Guide’s dedicated website. This resource also contains videos and additional content about finance options, including equity finance.

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