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Chloe Shakesby

Leeds marketing automation platform receives investment after 40% turnover jump

A Leeds equity firm has announced that it has boosted its portfolio with an investment into a marketing automation platform.

YFM Equity Partners (YFM) has made the undisclosed investment into fellow Leeds business Force24, a cloud-based marketing automation platform.

The platform has delivered more than 900 million marketing emails so far this year, with the business seeing turnover leap by 40 per cent last year.

Led by the founders, managing director Adam Oldfield and commercial director Nick Washbourne, Force24 has grown to a 54-strong team with its headquarters in Leeds.

Adam Oldfield, managing director, commented: “We are immensely proud to have seen the business go from strength to strength, it is now at the next stage of its development and, to take it forward, we knew we needed to partner with an investor that has real insight into our sector.

“YFM has a proven track record of supporting fast growing businesses and we undertook our own due diligence, talking to entrepreneurs within the PE house’s investment portfolio as well as to professional advisers, all of whom were very positive.

“We are confident that they are the right fit for us culturally – they really understand our business and believe in our growth trajectory.”

Nick Washbourne, commercial director, added: “Over the last few years, Force24 has experienced fast paced growth and despite some initial customer disruption at the outset of the pandemic, we have seen a resurgence in demand as more businesses accelerate their digital transformation.

“We have already established a strong foothold in the UK with increasing numbers of marketers recognising the key differentiators of our platform. This investment will help us to strengthen our sales and marketing operation, enabling us to build our profile in the market as well as continuing to develop the platform and invest in innovation.

“Over the next three years, we plan to significantly invest in our technology to enable marketers to save even more time and deliver even better messages via a broader range of message mediums.

“Force24 works with small, medium and large companies in a wide spectrum of industries, across B2B and B2C markets.

“During 2020, we’ve seen a significant increase in customer numbers, and changes to working practices have meant brands now place even more importance on holding strong digital relationships with customers and prospects.”

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