X-Forces has helped to launch 389 new entrepreneurs, to whom £4,129,976 in seed funding has been lent, as an official partner of the government’s Start Up Loans Company.
At the core of X-Forces’ service is thorough business planning and support that, with their ongoing coaching provision, is a journey that lasts years. Through unique corporate partnerships with industry leaders like EMC, Barclays and Cisco, the new business owners are further supported with mentorship and networking, in support of the Big Business helping Small Business initiative.
CEO and Founder of X-Forces, Ren Kapur, said: “Two years ago we set out on a mission to give the military community the support that was so desperately needed in enterprise. Business was a foreign and daunting avenue for Service-leavers, but now, two years on, X-Forces has built a strong support network and become a bridge between government, military charities and big business, all of whom acknowledge that the military community and small businesses play a vital role in the UK’s economy. X-Forces’ 376 entrepreneurs have the focus, tenacity and – importantly – the support to succeed and become the next generation of employers.”
CEO of the Start Up Loans Company, Tim Sawyer, said: “SULCO and X-Forces work closely to provide a unique approach to seed funding and support to this skilled and experienced community. Together, we are delivering meaningful second careers and sustainable economic growth for the Armed Forces Community and the UK economy. We are delighted that X-Forces have reached their £4 million lending milestone and look forward to continuing working together to support start-up businesses.”
Receipient of the loan that breached the £4m total is British Army veteran Daniel James, 43, who launched a blacksmithing business this summer offering contemporary and traditional ironwork from a forge in Pershore, Worcestershire.
Daniel James served in the Regimental Core of Drums as a GPMG machine gunner and, though his British Army career may have only lasted four years, he developed his skill in ‘civvy street’ on military contracts, welding and fabricating the Force Protection for vehicles going out to Afghanistan.
Daniel attended a startup workshop held by X-Forces and ABF The Soldiers’ Charity, which gave him the confidence to take the plunge. Daniel said: “The workshop opened my eyes to the world of business, and I went away and got started on my plan immediately. Since that day, X-Forces has been there for me with guidance and support beyond the funding. I am in a far better position to where I was before, exciting times lay ahead.”
Chief of Staff at ABF The Soldiers’ Charity, Brigadier Robin Bacon, said: “Working with X-Forces has allowed The Soldiers’ Charity to provide a new range of support to our beneficiaries. Our congratulations go to Daniel and all those who have attended workshops we have supported on launching your businesses.”