A Manchester training company helping the long-term unemployed return to work has received investment from fellow city-based firm Palatine Private Equity.
The investment in Back2Work is the private equity firm’s sixth investment from its returns-focused £100m Impact Fund, which invests in profitable businesses making a positive impact on the environment or society.
The news comes as Back2Work, founded in 2010, continues its recent rapid growth, which includes a number of long-term contract wins and annual revenues rising to £11.5m.
The staff headcount has also increased recently to over 140, with the business supporting more than 11,000 people with training.
The company works closely with companies in the warehousing, logistics, IT, digital, health and social care and construction sectors, which are all experiencing strong demand for staff, to help fill vacancies.
James Gregson, senior investment director for Palatine’s Impact Fund, said: “Back2Work is an excellent business delivering a clear social impact by helping people return to work and gain new skills. We are excited to be working with Luke and his dynamic team to build on the company’s strong recent growth and support the continued focus on employment outcomes and career progression.
“Back2Work is a compelling investment for the Impact Fund with a highly relevant proposition as the UK adjusts to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic which will inevitably create new requirements for retraining and upskilling.”
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Following the investment, Mr Gregson and Palatine investment director James Painter are joining the board of Back2Work.
Luke Muscat, managing director of Back2Work, said: “Since launching the business in 2011 B2W has always strived to deliver services that create a lasting impact, on the wellbeing, living standards and economic and environmental sustainability of the communities that we serve.
“B2W supports individuals from a wide range of backgrounds to secure employment and to develop sustainable careers in growth sectors. It was imperative that we picked the right investment partner that shared our values and passion for social purpose. We are delighted to be starting the next stage of our journey with the Palatine Impact Fund and to have their unique expertise in Impact investing and ESG to support our future growth strategy.”