North Liverpool company Make has secured investment of £150,000 from First Ark Social Investment for the redevelopment of makerspace within its North Docks venue, to accommodate education, events and classes.
Make North Docks opened in spring 2016 and has been working on growing the facility for the past three years.
Through First Ark the Make team accessed the Reach Fund to support plans for investment readiness, prior to being awarded a mix of grant and loan funding from First Ark’s Invest for Impact fund.
Make’s Ten Streets venue is one of 30 businesses supported by the Beautiful Ideas Company’s LaunchPad programme.
After an initial investment of £30,000, it has since received £87,000 from other investors, before securing this latest tranche of funding from First Ark
Paula Brown, investment manager at First Ark, said: “Make has a fantastic track record in helping people thrive in the creative industries, with great stories of people growing out of the space to do things such as opening shops and employing staff.
“First Ark Social Investment is delighted to have agreed a total investment of £150,000 to enable Make to develop their exciting growth plans, improve the facilities and increase capacity at their site in Liverpool’s North Docks.”
The Make team is planning on completing the redevelopment by autumn 2018, creating a space in the emerging Ten Streets area that is suitable for multiple uses.
- It will be integral in expanding Make’s classes programme, adding further woodwork, needle felting and drone coding courses, as well as more suitable space for education
- It will host gatherings, conferences and meet-ups for the sector, supporting and growing the local creative community
- It will host an increasing number of exhibitions and creative works, building on the LEAP 2017 festival, LJMU MA degree show and Captain Beefheart exhibition it has housed recently
- It will provide a community space for parties, quizzes and gigs, complimenting the developing Ten Streets offer
- Increased capacity means Make also plans to employ another five people in 2018, almost doubling its current workforce to 12 people
Kirsten Little, Make chief operating officer and founding director, says: “We’re really excited to receive this investment which means we can do more to support artists, makers and creatives with better facilities and more opportunities.
“Building the creative community here has always been the driving force behind our decisions and it’s great that investors share in that vision.”
Liverpool’s deputy mayor and cabinet member for culture, tourism and events, Councillor Wendy Simon, said: “This is fantastic news for both Make and the wider creative community, which will really benefit from the redevelopment.
“Make’s dedication to becoming a creative hub for the whole city is really inspiring, and this next step will allow them to reach out to a wider range of people, encourage new initiatives in the North Docks and provide a much-needed events space which can only strengthen the cultural sector.”