Seven months after the government announced the creation of a £1bn innovation fund to help fund technology-based businesses, Hermes Private Equity has launched its £125m Environmental Innovation Fund, which will invest in Britain’s fast-growing environmental industry. According to the Carbon Trust, the UK is now the sixth largest low carbon and environmental economy in the world, with 3.5 per cent of global market share. Entrepreneurs in the clean energy industry could gain access to the fund for up to three years, Hermes has announced. The fund will present a "real opportunity" for innovative companies, says Hermes Private Equity CEO Susan Flynn: “At this stage in the economic cycle, there are many forward-looking companies who may not have funding available to them. The fund will ensure that those seeking finance for promising new environmental ventures will have access to a source of funding.” Flynn added that Hermes has already identified a number of “attractive investment opportunities”, and will be deploying capital very soon. Energy and climate change minister David Kidney MP adds: “This new fund will help the UK to build on existing strengths in this sector, and enable British companies to demonstrate and commercialise these technologies.” The UK Innovation Investment Fund was announced last June as part of the government’s ‘Building Britain’s Future’ strategy, and will target small growing businesses, start-ups and spin-outs. Backed by an £150m investment by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, the Department of Energy and Climate Change and the Department of Health, it has already attracted private investment to more than match this amount, with the total first closing of £325m. Related articles:Government announces £1bn innovation fundCarbon Trust launches £100m green loanRichard Branson launches green venture Picture source
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