First small firm gets funding from the government's Capital Enterprise Fund

BUSINESS secretary Lord Mandelson yesterday announced that a Bedford-based firm has become the first to receive money from a &pound;75m government fund launched help small to medium businesses.<br /><br />Octopus Investments, which manages &pound;30m of the Capital for Enterprise (CFE) fund, said that it will invest &pound;2m into software firm KeTech.<br /><br />&ldquo;Ambitious and innovative businesses like this are the lifeblood of the economy but tough credit conditions can make it difficult for them to invest in their future,&rdquo; said Mandelson.<br /><br />The CFE fund, which was announced in January, comprises &pound;50m in state money and &pound;25m provided by retail banks. Its aim is to provide long-term capital to viable businesses which are struggling in the face of limited credit.<br /><br />A Glasgow-based company is expected to be the second firm to receive investment, this time from Mavern Capital Partners.