Tech-enabled training provider Digital Training Solutions (DTS) has set out plans to crack the US, Africa and China following long-term support from The Growth Company.
Having worked with DTS since 2016, The Growth Company (GC) has provided a wide range of training and funding services to the Bolton-based business. This includes using GC Business Growth Hub’s mentoring and Access to Finance services, as well as receiving a £25,000 start-up loan from GC Business Finance in 2016.
The Growth Company has also played a key role in supporting their overseas ambitions, with DTS receiving support from GC’s International Trade Team to secure a £20,000 export grant under the Department for International Trade’s ‘Exporting Is Great Campaign’.
In May this year, GC Angels completed a £250,000 joint equity investment with Maven, as the business looks to develop immersive technology in the training sector.
Most recently, the company has secured a place on The Growth Company’s Global Scale-Up Programme, which gives 50 of the region’s SMEs the opportunity to visit a key international growth market and a combination of tailored coaching and bootcamp support.
Founded by Mike Todd and Geseth Garcia in 2014 after working abroad in post-war Kosovo, DTS is an online learning company that uses cutting edge interactive video technology to create bespoke courses, with the objective of bringing a gaming approach to training. The firm has developed its Near-Life™ technology to offer a bespoke first-person experience that challenges users to make real-time decisions.
DTS has also demonstrated its scalability overseas. The business worked alongside the Norwegian Refugee Council, training Syrian aid workers entirely in Arabic to deliver support according to humanitarian guidelines. This saw the business claim an ‘Excellence in Learning Design’ award at the 2018 Learning and Tech Awards.
DTS is now looking to continue its journey with The Growth Company through further funding, support from the Department for International Trade to continue expanding internationally as well as showing an interest in the Made Smarter Programme and Global Scale-Up Programme.
GC Angels, part of the Growth Company, offers equity investment from £250,000 up to £2m. In addition, the company can reach, prepare and prequalify investments, as well as invest alongside associate angels and investment partners. In the last year, GC Angels invested £4.1m into eight businesses.
Mark Hughes, Group CEO at The Growth Company, said: “DTS is a company with enormous potential, both in the UK and internationally. Its innovative training technology is disrupting the market, and the work done by the company is already generating awards and attention from around the globe.
“The business is a brilliant example of how The Growth Company and its services interlink to support economic development across the North West. DTS has gone through a full journey with GC, from start-up loan to this equity investment, as well as numerous training and development programmes. It’s especially pleasing that this journey is continuing, with the business being accepted onto the Global Scale-Up Programme to support their expansion internationally.
“GC Angels was designed to address the imbalance in the market, with only one in 10 VC deals to mixed founders, so being able to support a mixed founded team is extremely pleasing. We wish them the best of luck and look forward to our continued work together.”
Geseth Garcia: “We are very excited to embark on the next phase of our business, which involves rolling out the Near-Life™ software and technology to a wider user base, with the help and support of The Growth Company and the GC Angels network. We want to develop a learning eco-system around our technology so that training professionals can license the software to develop and enhance their learning content delivery.”