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BGF invests £6m in Evoke Creative

BGF News 11.27.2018

Evoke Creative, a design-led manufacturer of interactive digital solutions, has received a £6m investment from BGF to support further growth in the UK and overseas.

Based in the Wirral, Evoke Creative supplies interactive digital solutions, including self-service kiosks, video walls, digital signage and payment terminals for blue-chip customers in the retail and leisure sectors. Its systems allow brands to connect and engage with their customers in dynamic and rewarding ways, helping to maximise transaction conversion rates, improve customer journeys and reduce costs.

Led by founders Neil Clark and Dean Ward, Evoke prides itself on creating bespoke solutions and providing an end-to-end service for customers, with design, software development and product assembly performed in-house to ensure quality is maintained. The success of this approach is evident from the long-term relationships they have cultivated with multinational brands including JD Sports, McDonalds, Biblioteca and Google.

With a growing workforce of 75, including award-winning design engineers and software developers, Evoke recently moved into purpose-built offices in Bromborough, which has enabled the business to have a workspace, showroom, warehouse, factory and production lines on site. Evoke has been voted as one of the 50 fastest growing companies in the North at the Northern Tech Awards in 2016, 2017 and 2018.

Mark Mills, former CEO of Cardpoint and NXC of Velocity Composites and Mini-Cam has been appointed as Non-Executive Chairman, following an introduction through BGF’s Talent Network, which connects portfolio companies with expertise to help support growth.

Neil Clark, CEO of Evoke, commented: “We’re really happy to be partnering with BGF as we continue to scale up and win more contracts in the UK and overseas. We offer something different to other businesses in the market, creating bespoke products for our customers and working with them from initial concept to final implementation and aftercare. This commitment, underpinned by our strong relationships with some of the world’s biggest brands, gives us the edge over our competitors and puts us in great stead, with BGF by our side, to take on new business in the UK and abroad.”

Matt Widdall, investor at BGF, said: “Evoke has demonstrated impressive international growth over the past few years, particularly with changing market requirements, and we’re delighted to be partnering with a fantastic, experienced team to achieve their ambitious growth plans. Their ability to be an end-to-end digital partner for customers and provide custom-built products assembled on site puts them head and shoulders above their competitors and we’re excited to support them as they take on more opportunities in the rapidly expanding UK and international digital solutions market.”

The investment was led for BGF by Matt Widdall and Rhys Davenport.

Evoke was advised on the transaction by Grant Thornton, led by Pete Terry, Chris Ryan and Brad Seekings.

Other advisors to the transaction were:

For BGF: DWF (Jonathan Robinson, Will Munday and Matthew Judge) and Checkup Ltd (Chris Smith)

For Evoke Creative:  DTM (Phil Whitehurst, Edward Barnes), Grant Thornton tax (Neil Sturmey)

BGF has made a number of investments in the North West in 2018, including:

  • TickX, the UK’s leading search engine and discovery platform for events and attractions tickets
  • Mission Mars, the North West operator behind hospitality concepts including Albert’s Schloss and Rudy’s Neapolitan Pizza
  • Miss Group, the web hosting company
  • Gaist, the digital mapping company that captures and analyses imagery about road conditions and the highways network