First investment cycle complete for SCR Jessica Fund

£3m funding facility for Yorkshire lender
Credit: Becky Stares

The SCR Jessica Fund has now had its first round of investments fully repaid and is reinvesting over £25.5 million back into the Sheffield City Region economy.

This represents a big milestone for the Fund, established in 2013, which was originally established with £22 million of capital.

With the repaid funding over the last year a further three loans of £4.5 million were made at the end of 2018, taking the total commitments in the City Region to £40.5 million over the last five years.

One of the most significant repayments in 2018 was a £4 million loan in support of a 75,000 sq ft unit at the Advanced Manufacturing Park in Waverley, which is now leased to McLaren for 20 years.

The unit was completed in May 2018 and will be home to over 200 employees that will be developing the ultra-lightweight carbon fibre tubs that are used to make the McLaren sports and supercars.

The total £40.5 million of investments will equate to a GDV of £87 million in the local economy when completed and the 780,000 sq ft of employment space created will accommodate an estimated 3,100 jobs in the Sheffield City Region.

Some of the Fund’s landmark investments include the redevelopments of Steel City House and the former National Union of Mineworkers offices in Sheffield.

Other projects funded to date include industrial developments at Doncaster Sheffield Airport, and at Gateway 36 in Barnsley as well as commercial development at Little Kelham and the construction of a new 78,000 sq ft office building at St Paul’s Place in Sheffield.

Demand from the market remains strong with a pipeline of projects totalling in the region of £30 million and the Fund continues to review applications for 2019.

Initially funded with the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and Growing Places capital and then benefiting from significant capital investment by the Sheffield City Region, Jessica aims to provide capital for projects at competitive commercial lending rates where ‘traditional’ funding sources are proving difficult.

Money from the repayment of loans is reinvested to finance new projects. The Fund commits capital to regeneration opportunities with a focus office and industrial or mixed-use developments, which meet the Fund’s targets on creation of new employment opportunities, remediation and creation of new floor space.

The fund is managed by CBRE Investment Advisory, part of CBRE Capital Advisors.