A north west business services group has gained a foothold in the Australian market by making a strategic seven-figure investment in a Brisbane-based invoice and trade finance company.
WeDo Business Services, which is headquartered in Oldham, has taken a significant stake in Invoice Finance Group (IFG).
IFG had been seeking an investment partner to help take it to the next level by adding funding capability and new business finance products. At the same time, WeDo was looking to establish itself Down Under.
WeDo directors Mark Lindsay and Chris Robinson engaged Wayne Smith, a former senior executive at Sydney-based business finance company ScotPac, to help with this phase of their growth plan.
Wayne was able to bring both parties together and helped to structure the deal. He has become chairman of IFG following the investment, and will work with its founders and directors Paul and Angela Tonges on its expansion strategy.
Mark, group chief executive of WeDo, said: “Our invoice finance business has been built on a simple model of delivering solutions in a transparent and value-added way, working with clients to ensure they get more than they expect.
“It was refreshing to see that IFG shares a similar approach which is very client-centric.
“The independent finance market in Australia is not as competitive as it is in the UK, and therefore we feel there is scope for IFG to expand significantly and develop additional service lines, much like our UK business has done in recent years. We are extremely excited by the opportunities and growth potential for IFG.”
WeDo provides a range of services to small and medium-sized companies. In addition to invoice and trade finance and start-up funding, it provides HR, back office, IT, digital and payroll support, with a focus on the recruitment sector.
Mark and Chris founded the business in 2019 with just four staff and the company has grown rapidly through organic expansion and acquisitions. The group now employs almost 100 people across its network of offices, including sites in Colchester, Swindon, Sheffield and MediaCityUK in Salford.
IFG is a boutique business which husband and wife team Paul and Angela set up in 2011. It specialises in providing invoice finance to businesses across Australia.
Paul said: “As the founders, we are very excited about the next chapter of IFG’s growth strategy. We’re delighted to share a common alignment in our vision and values with our new investors, by continuing to exceed our customers’ expectations.
“This strategic investment will allow IFG to better service our existing clients and attract new customers by enabling us to offer a broader range of finance products and a larger deal size. With so many Australian small businesses desperate to fund growth, IFG will be able to assist many more SMEs.”