Innovative businesses from Norfolk and Suffolk were given the chance to pitch to angel backers as part of an initiative to boost East Anglia’s economic potential.

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The Venta investor day, which helps match new enterprises with investors, welcomed nine businesses to the Hethel Engineering Centre, near Wymondham, to help secure them future funding.

John Irving, Venta chief executive, said yesterday’s event helped create potential jobs and encourage business to grow. “East Anglia is a hot-bed for investment. We have got four world-class universities and eight world-class institutions here, which is little wonder why we have innovative businesses coming out of the area.

“We are trying to encourage businesses, who may not be getting the support they need from the banks, to grow. We have people who want to invest, but do not know where to find the right business, so we can help them find the people who are looking for the business.

“One of the things we do to help our presenters at Venta is to help them create an investable proposition, so it is not just a pipe dream when an investor comes along.”

Speaking during the event, he said: “We have had a number of successes already. We have had two firm enquiries and two enquiries from people who could not make the event.

“What we hope to do through Venta is to generate a significant number of businesses that will go on to employ a few people, and then carry on from there.”

The businesses looking for financial backing included Data Squasher, Cinegi, Informed Choices, Freedom Gyms, In Search of Taste, Exhalation Technology, Extremis, DiagNodus, Syrinix.

Tony Blake, commercial director of Data Squasher, was hoping to attract investors to his company, which manages data on mobile phones.

He said: “The fact that you can present yourself and talk informally with potential investors has been extremely useful to our company.

“We have seen an increase in the number of angels at this event and I am pleased to say I have managed to get a number of contacts from interested investors.”

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