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Lancashire online retail specialist TymeOnline has secured a £150,000 investment through NPIF – FW Capital Debt Finance, managed by FW Capital and part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF).

The company, based in the Blackburn Rovers Business Centre at Ewood Park, offers a complete outsourced managed solution for businesses, products and brands to trade in online marketplaces. Their services include helping to drive web traffic and building platforms for retailers to trade from. Clients include household names such as TJ Hughes, The Hut Group, Homebase , HMV, Zavvi and numerous other retailers.

The loan from NPIF – FW Capital will be used to almost double TymeOnline’s team from 8 to 14 before the end of the year, support its expansion across the UK and Europe, and grow in the face of increased demand for its services.

TymeOnline was set up by director Ian Moore who initially started out as a trader on eBay to pay his way through college. After becoming a successful online retailer he decided to use his skills to help others trade online and eventually set up TymeOnline with two other shareholders – Ivan Durkin and Tim Doble.

Ian Moore, co-founder and managing director of TymeOnline, said: “Many businesses have had to switch to online retailing, particularly recently because of Covid, however many don’t have the time, resource or knowledge of how to trade online successfully. Using our expertise and partnerships with eBay, Amazon and other online marketplaces, we analyse sectors to optimise data feeds and ensure that businesses make the most of every sales opportunity.

“We’ve seen a huge upsurge in demand for our services however we needed to invest to grow our business so that we can service additional accounts. Initially we approached our bank for funding however they were unwilling to invest. We were introduced to FW Capital and NPIF who understood straight away what we were trying to achieve and after a quick and clear process agreed to invest.

FW Capital Senior Investment Executive Andy Traynor said: “Lockdown has changed the way people shop and if retailers don’t offer an online presence they may struggle. TymeOnline has a strong customer base and has forged close partnerships with leading online retail platforms. The team has been extremely successful so far and we believe this investment will significantly increase their sales in the future.”

Debbie Francis OBE, Chair of the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership, said: “It’s fantastic to see continued investment into the Lancashire region from the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund, which helps ambitious businesses like TymeOnline to meet their exciting growth plans.

“TymeOnline is yet another entrepreneurial Lancashire success story. The team recognised an opportunity through the Pandemic to support other businesses to realise their full potential and meet customer demand for online retail services. I’m delighted to see the business receive this funding and wish them every success in their planned expansion.”

Sue Barnard at British Business Bank, said: “Since its launch in 2017, NPIF’s impact has been wide-ranging, providing funding to launch new products, employ new staff, enter new markets and more. We are pleased to continue that momentum with this investment and are proud to continue our commitment to unlocking the North’s growth potential by supporting business communities with vital investment.”

FW Capital provides loans of £100,000 to £750,000 to businesses based in the NPIF region with a focus on the North West, Cumbria and Tees Valley.

The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund project is supported financially by the European Union using funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and the European Investment Bank.

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