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  • Cloud Direct secures funding of £1 million to support investment in its Provide™ cloud automation platform

  • 40 jobs to be created over the next four years

Cloud Direct, a Bath-based cloud services provider, has secured credit facilities of £1 million through Santander’s Breakthrough programme.

The cash infusion, which marks the company’s first outside funding, will allow Cloud Direct to accelerate its growth strategy and develop its Provide™ cloud automation platform, ultimately generating employment opportunities for 40 new people.

Founded in 2002 by entrepreneur Brett Raynes, Cloud Direct delivers cloud services to small and medium sized businesses (SMBs). The company has already helped some 4,000 UK organisations transition to the cloud safely and easily, with three core cloud packages: Business Continuity & Security, Office & People Productivity, and Workspace & Application Delivery.

Brett Raynes has extensive experience of founding and running technology businesses in the UK and abroad. He started his first business in 1992, which was sold to a NASDAQ quoted business in 1999. Following further experience running equity-backed technology businesses in France and Germany, Brett founded Cloud Direct with the intention of building a leading cloud services provider in the UK.

Cloud Direct was awarded best company to work for at the annual CRN Sales and Marketing Awards in 2013, holds an Investors in People Gold accreditation, and is a finalist in the first ever national Investor in People Awards, 2014.

Santander’s funding package includes £1 million Growth Capital investment, which is provided on a cash flow basis – rather than the more traditional asset-backed financing that has hampered the company’s access to external funding. The Growth Capital loan is part of Santander’s Breakthrough programme, which aims to support fast growth small businesses, to help them accelerate their growth potential. As well as funding, Breakthrough offers companies access to trade missions, business master classes, networking events and support in areas such as finance and marketing.

Brett Raynes, Founder and CEO at Cloud Direct said: 

“Speed is of the essence in the cloud services business, and this funding is a terrific boost to our ambitious growth plans. It will accelerate the development and marketing of our Packaged Cloud services and help us provide our customers and partners with innovative management and support platforms.”

Darren Hart, Head of Growth Capital at Santander UK, said:

“As a small and fast growing business, traditional debt financing was a challenge, so through the Santander Breakthrough Growth Capital funding scheme, we have worked with the business in developing a relationship, understanding and funding structure to support the management teams growth plans. I am delighted we have completed this transaction and look forward to a long successful working relationship with Brett and Cloud Direct.”

– Ends –

The information contained in this press releases is intended solely for journalists and should not be used by consumers to make financial decisions.


  1. Breakthrough is a national programme which is being delivered regionally across Santander’s five business regions with the help of regional boards. The five regions are Scotland and the North East; the North; the Midlands and Wales; London, Anglia and the South East and Thames Valley and the South West.
  2. The growth capital loans are available to businesses with annual turnover of up to £25 million which have a demonstrated history of high year on year growth in turnover, profit or employment.
  3. Further information can be found on the Breakthrough website:
  4. Further information about Executive Serviced Apartments can be found on the ESA website:

About Santander Breakthrough

The Breakthrough programme is aimed at businesses with a turnover of between £500,000 and £25 million per annum with demonstrable growth in turnover, profit or employment. Breakthrough aims to help these businesses fulfil their growth potential to create jobs and stimulate supply-chain demand and a private sector led recovery via a programme of both capital and support. Breakthrough is part of Santander Corporate & Commercial.

Santander Corporate & Commercial provides dedicated relationship banking support to businesses with a turnover of more than £250,000. It is part of Santander UK plc, a leading financial services provider in the UK offering a wide range of personal and commercial financial products and services. At 31 December 2013, Santander UK had more than 14 million active customers with c. 20,000 employees, c. 1,000 branches and 50 regional Corporate Business Centres. Santander UK is subject to the full supervision of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) in the UK. Santander UK plc customers are protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) in the UK.

Banco Santander (SAN.MC, STD.N, BNC.LN) is a retail and commercial bank, based in Spain, with a presence in 10 main markets. Santander is the largest bank in the euro zone by market capitalization. Founded in 1857, Santander had EUR 1.24 trillion in managed funds, 103 million customers, 13,927 branches – more than any other international bank – and 182,958 employees at the close of 2013. It is the largest financial group in Spain and Latin America. It also has significant positions in the United Kingdom, Portugal, Germany, Poland and the northeast United States. Santander registered EUR 4.37 billion in attributable profit in 2013, an increase of 90% from the previous year.

Media Enquiries

Jemma Abela – Santander – 0207 756 4199

The press office operates from 8.00am to 6.00pm. Outside of these hours please call 0800 5877708.

About Cloud Direct

Cloud Direct provides packaged cloud services to SMBs in the UK. The antidote to traditional IT, which is support and labour intensive, Cloud Direct has helped 4,000 organisations transition to the cloud easily and safely. Cloud Direct aggregates and integrates best-in-class cloud services on secure provisioning platforms; customers receive a single monthly bill and a single helpdesk, 24/7. Cloud Direct supports business continuity, drives productivity and guarantees the availability and security of its customers’ infrastructure and applications.

Media Enquiries

Catherine McFarland – Cloud Direct – 01225 839 944

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