CIOSIF took a £750,000 equity stake in Wildanet as part of a £1.5m package of investment with private investors and Crowdcube in January 2019, prompting Jake Berry MP, then Minister for Growth, to say: “Access to superfast broadband is vital to economic growth in our rural areas and this project will open the door to digital services for thousands of people across Cornwall. Harnessing the innovation of British business to grow prosperous communities is at the heart of this investment.”
And Ken Cooper, Managing Director at the British Business Bank, said at the time: “We are delighted that the fund’s first investment will not only create jobs but will also bring improved connectivity for homes and businesses, which is good news for productivity and growth.”
The following year, in April 2020, CIOSIF invested a further £400,000 in Wildanet, praising the company’s exceptional customer retention rates, technical innovation and commitment to deliver guaranteed internet speeds in hard-to-reach rural areas.
CIOSIF’s was a catalyst for attracting further investment and in December 2020 Wildanet announced that it had secured a £50m investment from the Gresham House British Strategic Investment Infrastructure Fund LP. This investment is enabling Wildanet to expand its superfast broadband network to communities across Cornwall, and will see almost 100 jobs created in the business.
CIOSIF 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.