A Nottingham Trent University graduate who founded an online restaurant booking guide has received a significant financial investment from a leading entrepreneur.
Adam Roberts, who set up Go dine with support from The Hive, the university’s centre for entrepreneurship and enterprise, has received investment worth up to £320,000 from Yorkshire-based serial entrepreneur Graham Leslie.
Mr Leslie is the founder of Galpharm International Ltd, the largest privately-owned store brand pharmaceutical company in Europe, and a former chairman of Huddersfield Town Football Club.
His investment in Adam’s business, which is based at The Hive, will enable Adam to re-launch its website, establish a mobile phone app, recruit additional sales staff, invest in online marketing and expand its directory of restaurants.
Adam, 29, who graduated from Nottingham Trent University with a degree in criminology, said: “We’re delighted to have completed the deal. I always knew that we deserved a chance like this but it’s hard to get in front of the right people.
“It’s a real compliment to have the backing and support from someone like Graham Leslie. It’s a good feeling to know that we’re doing something right. With this backing I’m certain we can take Go dine to the next level.”
Adam, who launched Go dine three years ago, was introduced to Mr Leslie through The Entrepreneurs Club in Leeds.
Mr Leslie, a non-academic resident professor of Enterprise and Entrepreneurship at the University of Huddersfield, sold Galpharm International Ltd in 2008 to US giant Perrigo Gourp for $88 million. He now has business interests in construction, media, healthcare and more.
Go dine lists more than 520 quality restaurants across eight counties in the East Midlands and Yorkshire and is accessed by more than 85,000 people each month who are looking for restaurants, offers and menus. Adam has ambitions for Go dine to expand to cover restaurants across the UK and Europe.
Mr Leslie, who is providing the funding through his investment management firm One Degree Capital, said: “We were really impressed with Adam’s business model and his long-term plans for the company. We’re looking forward to working closely with him, and his team, to ensure that his business dream becomes a reality.”
Chris Hall, business manager of The Hive, said: “We’re really proud to see Adam’s business go from strength to strength and for him to secure such a significant amount of investment from someone as high profile as Graham Leslie.
“I really think it demonstrates what can be achieved if budding entrepreneurs like Adam are given support to not only start a business but grow it to the point that it becomes investable.”