Accrington accountants facilitate Dragons Den event

Five entrepreneurs have pitched their business ideas to a panel of corporate investors at a ‘Dragons Den’ style event held at the Mercure Dunkenhalgh Blackburn Hotel.

Paul Spencer DirectorThe seventh event since the initiative was launched in association with Haworths Chartered Accountants in 2013, Lancashire Business Angels is designed to ‘match-make’ investors and entrepreneurial high-growth North West businesses.

The event kicked off with keynote speaker, Nick Horrocks, director at tech-only investment bank, GP Bullhound, who highlighted the potential of start-ups in the region.

The speech was followed by five pitches from shortlisted entrepreneurs based across the North West seeking investment between £100,000 and £250,000 in return for an equity stake in their business. Budding investees included Burnley-based Positive Footprints, Bolton business ID App 4U and Manchester start-up Socialy.

A group of high net worth individuals and venture capitalists listened to the start-ups who were asked to demonstrate rapid growth, an experienced management team and a viable business plan that has the potential for long-term expansion in a growing market.

Paul Spencer, director at Haworths Chartered Accountants, said: “Today, funding is significantly harder to obtain via traditional routes and this has led to the emergence of alternative finance sources, of which the business angel market is one.

“Our sponsorship means that investors and businesses are not charged for pitching or investing, providing a ‘fee-free’ opportunity for investors to see fantastic business ideas and enabling aspiring entrepreneurs to secure a valuable cash injection for their business.

“The quality of the pitches was fantastic and we believe they’ll see similar success to the entrepreneurs who’ve previously presented at our events.” Around 30 potential investors and businesses attended the event and more angel investors are encouraged to get involved to form part of the panel for the next event which will see a line-up of five other businesses in early 2017.