BLM’s head of commercial advisory and private wealth Siri Siriwardene has joined the Birmingham City Council’s Business Growth Programme 2 Investment Board. Siri will be representing BLM alongside other industry board members to support development of West Midlands B2B SMEs.
The £25m BGP 2 is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund and provides two levels of grant funding. For existing B2B SMEs located in or moving into the Greater Birmingham and Solihull and The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership areas, grants are available of £10k - £1 million, whilst for start- up B2B businesses located in or moving into The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership area only, grants of £2.5k - £10k are available. The Investment Board will review eligibility criteria for each business and subject to the criteria being met, a BGP2 grant can be offered on the basis of the company creating new jobs.
BLM is the only legal firm on the Investment Board which consists of members representing a range of sectors, including automotive, rail, banking, education, LEPS, manufacturing and representative from the Birmingham City Council.
Speaking on his appointment to the investment board, head of BLM’s commercial advisory and private wealth practice Siri Siriwardene said:
“I’m honoured to be a part of the BGP 2 Investment Board that will play an integral part of facilitating the development of SMEs in the West Midlands. We have a fantastic opportunity to maximise potential growth opportunities that will help the region diversify into new sectors as well as assist pre-established businesses. I am excited to be part of the great team that will take these to the next level.”
Mohammed Zahir, Head of Business Enterprise and Innovation, Birmingham City Council, said:
“We are thrilled to have Siri Siriwardene on the BGP 2 Investment Board. His appointment complements our existing panel and is a great endorsement of our strategy and ambition. With his combined legal sector experience and entrepreneurial history, Siri is familiar with the challenges and opportunities that exist for SMEs. His strong sector knowledge and experience will be vital as we deliver on the objectives of the programme."
Further details of the BGP 2 can be found here. For more information on BLM's Commercial Advisory and Private Wealth services, click here.