British Business Bank programme: Enterprise Capital Funds

Imbiba is a specialist lender in the UK leisure and hospitality market. Founded by former leisure entrepreneurs, the team provide support as former operator-investors in key areas of property, operational finance, branding and digital marketing. Imbiba has been investing in the UK leisure market for 20 years, supporting leisure and hospitality brands including Drake & Morgan, Darwin & Wallace, Temper and Purple Dragon, amongst many others.

In February 2018, Imbiba closed the Imbiba Growth Fund at its hard cap of £50m, with an investment of £30m, provided by the the British Business Bank’s Enterprise Capital Funds (ECF) programme, which combines private and public money to make equity investments in high growth businesses. The Imbiba Growth Fund will provide growth capital and operational support to young and dynamic UK leisure businesses seeking to scale.

John Connell, Chairman of Imbiba, commented: “We are pleased to have raised this new fund, with investment from the British Business Bank alongside several of the UK’s most successful leisure entrepreneurs, to provide both capital and operational support to some of most exciting growth businesses in our sector. Having traded through different economic cycles over the last 20 years, we see some fantastic opportunities in the current leisure market and believe that an agile £50m fund will be key to help to drive the growth of some of the more dynamic businesses in our industry.”

Ken Cooper, Managing Director, Venture Solutions at the British Business Bank,said: “The expansion of our Enterprise Capital Funds programme is a central part of the Bank’s work to grow the UK’s patient capital market and ensure high growth smaller businesses can access the equity finance they need to realise their growth potential. We are delighted to have completed this investment into the Imbiba Growth Fund and to partner with the team at Imbiba, who have a history of success in supporting high growth UK companies.”


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