Business forum to spark investment in Yorkshire's sustainable businesses


CO2Sense Yorkshire is calling on businesses in the sustainability sector to pitch for up to £250,000 of investment through the Yorkshire Association of Business Angels (YABA).

Businesses will be able to pitch to investors at a dedicated forum, to be held at law firm Pinsent Masons in Leeds on 11 May 2010. The YABA event, run in partnership with CO2Sense Yorkshire, will help organisations that operate in the sustainability sector to source funding to grow their business. The types of businesses this is aimed at include those delivering resource efficiency services, producing innovative low-carbon products or creating sustainable sources of energy.

CO2Sense, a business support and market development programme funded by Yorkshire Forward and the European Regional Development Fund, is working closely with YABA to increase the level of private sector investment available to sustainable businesses in the region.  CO2Sense provides technical support to businesses which are starting up or developing new products in the sustainability sector. Its verification and advocacy of the value of new environmental products and services gives private sector investors increased confidence in this emerging sector. Working with partners such as YABA helps to bring forward better business plans, refined pitches and ultimately the all important investment businesses need.

Richard O’Connell, project manager at CO2Sense Yorkshire said: “Yorkshire and Humber aims to lead the way in the sustainability sector. The YABA forum presents an exciting opportunity for businesses to receive the vital investment they need to prosper. We are hoping that some great partnerships can be forged to drive the region forward in a low carbon economy.”

Barbara Greaves, YABA manager said: “New or expanding businesses often need additional funding and expertise to reach their full potential. The YABA forum offers a way for businesses to attract both. We have over 130 investor ‘business angels’ looking to partner with businesses in the area and we hope that this event repeats the success of others we have held in the past.”

Businesses and potential investors wishing to attend the event should contact Charlotte Atkinson on 01423 810149 or email Businesses will be asked to submit a summary of their venture before being invited to pitch in person to potential investors.

More information

CO2Sense Yorkshire

  • CO2Sense Yorkshire is a not-for-profit business development programme, which helps businesses in Yorkshire and Humber to succeed in the low-carbon economy
  • It is a fully-owned subsidiary of the Regional Development Agency, Yorkshire Forward
  • It is funded by Yorkshire Forward and European Regional Development Fund (ERDF)
  • It has four programmes:
    - Resource Efficiency, which helps businesses to use fewer resources and helps businesses in the environmental sector to grow
    - Carbon Reduction, which helps the region’s largest businesses to adapt their business plans to a changing environment and to prosper in the low-carbon environment
    - Renewable Energy, which helps businesses to find sources of low-carbon energy and helps generators of low-carbon energy to sell their energy
    - Carbon Capture and Storage, which encourages industry and investors to develop CCS infrastructure in the region

YABA is a non-profit making introduction service that puts entrepreneurs and companies seeking finance in touch with private investors, known as business angels, looking to invest in start-up, growth stage and turnaround opportunities.

Business angels provide a vital source of funding to fill the equity gap in the high risk, early stages of business. They may invest sums of up to £250,000 but more usually keep within a range of £10,000 to £100,000. In some cases, a group of business angels may come together in a syndicate, particularly in cases where a large amount of finance is sought. Importantly, angels are also able to offer a wealth of business expertise and advice.

YABA also offers companies access to a register of business mentors and non-executive directors drawn from its membership, who have expertise and experience in a wide range of industry sectors and professions.

The Association is sponsored by regional development agency Yorkshire Forward and is a member of the British Business Angel Association.

The Association runs a full events schedule throughout the year, including regular investment forums, at which entrepreneurs pitch their business opportunity and Master Classes for angel members on topics relating to private equity investment. YABA provides investors with secure online access to business opportunities in the region.

Associate members are drawn from the professional services sector and include legal, finance and banking representatives.

Further information is available on the YABA website: