Backing for survey firm with roots in solid rock
IT helps turn rocks into money – and now it's unearthed some cash of its own.
BGS International, whose scientists tell countries where their mineral wealth lies, has been given money by a venture capital fund to help it grow.
The company is based at Keyworth and is a spin-out from the British Geological Survey.
It employs geo-scientists – experts who carry out surveys which help countries like Tanzania, Sudan, Cameroon and Afghanistan understand where their minerals lie and how they might be exploited.
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BGS International wants to work in more countries and offer a wider range of services.
Now, it is being give the money to do so by Midven, a venture capital fund which puts money into businesses which look likely to grow and appreciate in value.
Midven, which has an office in Nottingham, is putting a further £60,000 into BGS International as part of a wider package of £200,000 of support.
Mark White, of Midven, explained why it had backed the business.
"The British Geological Survey was the world's first geological survey, and has broken new ground in being the first of the major world survey organisations to spin out part of its operations in order to give it greater commercial focus and flexibility.
"We have been closely involved in the planning for this for a couple of years and have always been greatly impressed with the company's track record and the skills and standing of the team.
"The surveys they carry out, often as part of multi-million dollar World Bank programmes, are essential precursors to the establishment of a region's mineral exploitation and licensing strategy, and so provide a key element in the economic development of many emerging nations.
"The market has warmly welcomed the creation of BGS International and demand for its services has exceeded our expectations, so we are delighted to be able to invest further in its growth."
BGS International is in its first year of operations, and managing director David Ovadia says it plans to expand further.
"Our business plan is on track and this further investment will enable us to maintain our working capital levels and our core services," he said.
"We have been extremely busy in our first year of operations and we have established a very sound base for the future.
"We are keen to expand our activities both in terms of the parts of the world we work in and also the range of services we can offer.
"This new investment is an important step in enabling this to happen."
And he praised an investment fund run by Midven.
"The Rainbow Seed Fund was our first investor and has been a helpful and supportive ally in our first year, and we are glad to have its continued backing."
BGS International employs three full-time directors plus support staff in its East Midlands headquarters and has some 20 consultants working worldwide.
Projects they are working on are likely to run for at least the next two years, but the company says other potential projects could stretch out for years ahead.