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Fund hits key PS150m milestone; BUSINESS WIRE.

MORE than PS150m has now been invested by the EUbacked North West Fund (NWF) in over 440 businesses across Merseyside and the North West.

Launched in 2010, the NWF ringfences 40% of its funding for small and medium-sized businesses in the Liverpool city region.

Since it was established, it has had a significant impact on the North West economy, boosting GVA by PS60m. This figure will continue to rise as investments continue to mature and grow.

During the last six years, the fund has created and safeguarded 4,500 jobs and has leveraged an additional PS140m in private sector finance.

It has invested in businesses across a range of North West sectors, including technology, life sciences, energy, manufacturing, and digital and creative, to deliver growth objectives and expansion into new markets.

Cliff Maylor, chief executive of the NWF, said: "Reaching this milestone is a fantastic achievement and caps off a period of great success.

"Our funding and strategic guidance has enabled businesses to expand into new markets, create additional jobs, along with developing new and existing products."

ST HELENS housing provider, Helena Partnerships, is spearheading a drive to create new employment and training opportunities.

The organisation, part of North West housing group Torus, has been awarded PS130,000 in funding from transport authority Merseytravel and the Fusion21 Foundation, a registered charity established by Huyton-based national social enterprise Fusion21.

The funds are being used to create specialised transport sector-based training programmes which will upskill and improve the prospects of jobseekers while simultaneously providing employers from local rail, coach, bus and haulage businesses with a pool of trained and qualified staff.

Dave McGuinness, social value manager at Fusion21, said: "The Fusion21 Foundation is passionate about providing social investment opportunities that can create lifechanging results - and we are proud to have contributed PS66,068 of funding to support the 'Jobs into Transport' project.

"Fusion21 endorses Helena's commitment to tackling worklessness and

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Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:May 20, 2016
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