A Bristol street food business has received a £100k funding boost for expansion.

Eatchu, which specialises in Japanese street food, has received a smaller loan from SWIG Finance as part of the South West Investment Fund to establish a fully-fitted dine-in and takeaway premises in Clifton.

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The £200m South West Investment Fund covers the entire South West region and provides loans from £25k to £2m and equity investment up to £5m to help a range of small and medium sized businesses to start up, scale up or stay ahead.

Eatchu owners Guy and Victoria Siddall began trading in 2016 and soon became a permanent lunchtime trader at Bristol’s historic St Nicholas Market. In 2019 they established a food preparation kitchen in St Philips, and in 2022 expanded further with a street food unit providing the food at Wiper and True’s 500 capacity brewery taproom in Old Market.

The new funding will help to create up to six new jobs in the coming year.

Eatchu was referred to SWIG Finance by commercial finance broker, Jerry Riches, of Business Finance Trust.

Of the funding, Guy said “Having successfully navigated our way through the pandemic, we are really pleased that demand for our street food is still strong. This new takeaway premises will widen our customer base quite significantly, however, the costs are high and so without South West Investment Fund support, this round of growth may not have been possible.”

SWIG’s Senior Business Manager, Nicola Parker, commented “What Guy and Vic have achieved through Eatchu is a great example of how to start and scale a business. Despite the challenges brought on by the pandemic, this business continues to grow at a rapid pace.”

Jody Tableporter, Director UK and Regional Funds at the British Business Bank, said: “The South West Investment Fund is here to help small businesses like Eatchu reach the next stage of growth and we’re delighted to be supporting Guy and Vic’s latest Bristol venture.”

The purpose of the South West Investment Fund is to drive sustainable economic growth by supporting innovation and creating local opportunity for new and growing businesses across the South West. The South West Investment Fund will increase the supply and diversity of early-stage finance for South West smaller businesses, providing funds to firms that might otherwise not receive investment and help to break down barriers in access to finance.

About SWIG Finance

SWIG Finance manages the smaller loans part of SWIF across the region.

SWIG Finance is a non-profit company that supports viable South West businesses that can’t secure sufficient funding from their bank. By empowering underserved small businesses to overcome their financial barriers, we are working to create a more balanced financial ecosystem.

We’re growing every year. In 2022/23, we lent £14m to 478 businesses, helping to create and secure over 1,000 jobs and generate £44.6m in social impact. Download the report here.

If you’d like an informal chat about your funding requirements, get in touch with our friendly and professional team to see how we can help: info@swigfinance.co.uk / 01872 227 930.

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