South City Studios
South City Studios, based in the heart of Stockport, is a space for music artists to record new hits, practice and use its state-of-the-art pre-production services.
With a vision to bring world-class recording studios to South Manchester, Paul Bowe set up South City Studios in 2017 to make his mark in the UK music scene.
After opening, demand for its pre-production music rooms quickly took off. It was clear that the need for more high-quality recording studios was growing by the day.
Paul soon realised that to keep up with his studio’s growing popularity, he would need to expand his business. He was concerned that mainstream finance providers might not be a good fit for his business needs though. He got in touch with the GM Business Growth Hub Access to Finance team to explore his options.
The studio had two years of strong financial performance. Paul and Geoff Clowes, an Access to Finance specialist, knew that expanding the business was the next step to keep it growing.
Geoff introduced Paul to Loz O’Connor, a fund manager from FW Capital, which works in partnership with the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF) to provide funding to small businesses in the North of England, like South City Studios.
South City Studio’s unique service, its story of supporting the local music community and its strong financial performance made it a perfect target for investment. The studio was able to secure a six-figure loan from NPIF – FW Capital Debt Finance.
The investment has allowed Paul and his team to open additional studio space at their existing site.
With the help of the Access to Finance team, they now have 15 permanent rooms that can be hired on a monthly basis and a further four rooms available for flexible bookings.
It doesn’t stop there either. The funding has helped South City Studios plan the next stage of its growth journey.
The studio is now looking to buy additional space at Welkin Mill, close to their current location, as well as open a 500-capacity pre-production room where artists can rehearse and record in a venue setting. It will create two new jobs and be the first of its kind studio in the North.
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