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NPIF funding provides a significant boost to a digital marketing agency.

A digital marketing agency headquartered in Manchester has recently secured funding from NPIF – River & GC Microfinance, managed by GC Business Finance (GCBF) in collaboration with River Capital, as part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF).

Founded in 2011 by Simon Leeming and Dave Watson, who previously collaborated in sales at a US software firm, Digital Media Stream has experienced significant growth. It has evolved into a Diamond HubSpot Solutions Partner, specialising in CRM implementation projects alongside retained marketing services.

Initially, Digital Media Stream received an £18,000 Start Up Loan from the British Business Bank via GCBF in 2014. This financing facilitated business expansion, with the team also benefiting from various Growth Company services, including workshops organised by GM Business Growth Hub.

In 2023, Digital Media Stream acquired Bespoke Digital, a seasoned marketing agency with over two decades of digital marketing expertise. This acquisition propelled the team's size to 22 individuals, prompting the implementation of a new management structure.

Collaborating with GCBF, Digital Media Stream has continued its journey towards expanding the business.

With the recent infusion of a £100,000 NPIF loan, Digital Media Stream aims to elevate its revenue to £2 million. The company intends to further invest in talent and technology, leveraging the enhanced skill set acquired from the Bespoke Digital acquisition to elevate its client services.

Simon Leeming, co-founder of Digital Media Stream, said: "We are incredibly proud of what we have achieved since founding Digital Media Stream in 2011. The last year has been particularly exciting for us, with the acquisition of Bespoke Digital and the expansion of our team. To allow us to continue delivering on our market leading proposition, it was clear additional funding was needed.

"Andy and the team at GCBF have supported us throughout our entire journey, from start up to expansion, with this latest loan testament to their ability to understand our business goals. With the new loan in place, we can continue to invest in our people further and support even more clients."

Andy Nichols, senior loan manager at GC Business Finance, added: "The growth Digital Media Stream has achieved since receiving a Start Up Loan is incredible. Since working with the business in its early stages, the teams' entrepreneurial spirit and determination was clear, so I am pleased that we have been able to support them again.

"The new loan comes at an exciting time as the business enters its next stage of growth following the acquisition of Bespoke Digital. The success of the team showcases the strength of talent in the Northern business environment that we are proud to support through our funding. I look forward to seeing what is next for Digital Media Stream."

Keira Shepperson, director at the British Business Bank, said: "Digital Media Stream has shown significant growth, first from securing funding through the Start Up Loans programme and now through the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund. 

"This is an excellent example of Northern talent flourishing and exemplifies why it is so important to invest in regional support. I look forward to seeing how the Digital Media Stream team will grow, creating more jobs in the North and boosting economic prosperity."

The current NPIF investment phase has now completed with the British Business Bank launching the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund II in March 2024.

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.