The Scottish National Investment Bank has officially launched with the completion of its first major investment.
Supported by the Scottish Government, it is the UK’s first mission-led development bank and will be capitalised with £2 billion in funding over the next ten years.
The bank’s proposed missions will focus primarily on supporting Scotland’s transition to net zero, extending equality of opportunity through improving places and harnessing innovation to enable Scotland to flourish.
It will provide patient capital – a form of long-term investment – for businesses and projects in Scotland, which it is hoped will catalyse further private sector investment.
Commenting on the launch, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “The Scottish National Investment Bank will help to tackle some of the biggest challenges we face now and in years to come, delivering economic, social and environmental returns.
“The launch of the bank is one of the most significant developments in the lifetime of this parliament, with the potential for it to transform, grow and decarbonise Scotland’s economy.”
Willie Watt, Scottish National Investment Bank Chair, added: “Today is a key milestone for the Scottish National Investment Bank.
“Our launch enables us to make mission-led, strategic, patient investments in businesses and projects that can deliver benefits for the people of Scotland. I am excited about the role the Bank will play in supporting and enabling growth in the Scottish economy.”
The Bank’s first action will see £12.5 million invested in Glasgow-based tech startup, M Squared Lasers. The firm intends to use the funding boost to support and accelerate growth.
- Report warns of new threat from AI-powered cyberattacks
- Scottish fintech Modulr gains £9 million PayPal backing
- Government-backed project to see 10 new satellites built in Glasgow
The First Minister said the first investment highlights a “great example of the ambitious and innovative companies” Scotland’s tech sector boasts.
Dr Graeme Malcolm, CEO and founder of M Squared, said: “We are delighted that the Scottish National Investment Bank has invested in M Squared as its very first business – our shared commitments to society and the environment makes this an ideal partnership that will enable accelerated growth and progress in frontier technologies.”
Watt commented: “We are particularly pleased that our first investment is in M Squared which is at the cutting edge of innovation and is a recognised world-leader in its field.
“It is our firm belief that the bank will make many more investments that deliver positive mission impacts in the years and decades to come.”