An evaluation of the £4 million Technology Transfer Fund in the West Midlands has found it has helped companies to turn over an additional £25 million and created 47 jobs in the past two years.

The fund, run by the Central Technology Belt (CTB), was launched in October 2006 to help the development of small and medium-sized science and technology businesses based along the A38 corridor.

The most recent phase of the Dragon’s Den-style fund, TTF2, offered grants of up to £25,000 to more than 150 local companies.

The independent research was paid for by Advantage West Midlands which also provided the funding for the CTB scheme.

A total of 50 per cent of companies surveyed for the report indicated that employment levels would have been lower had they not accessed the TTF2 funds, with 20 per cent of these stating that employment levels would be more than 50 per cent lower than at present.

The report expected the investment into the small businesses to return a Gross Value Added (GVA) of £11.10 for every £1 invested in the scheme.

AWM’s chief executive, Mick Laverty, said: “These are encouraging figures, considering the time that has elapsed since the fund has closed, especially in light of the current economic climate.”