Getting a new venture off the ground

Providing financial help in the real world

Conwy-based Frontgrid, which specialises in adventure leisure and virtual reality attractions, had designed and produced the world’s first virtual reality (VR) paragliding experience product, ParadropVR.

Unlike other VR attractions, ParadropVR is fully immersive and creates an unrivalled, realistic flying sensation for the user. It combines dynamic physical movement and stunning virtual reality graphics with a skill-based game that is 100% controlled by the visitor, to add an extra layer of fun and exhilaration to the experience.

The company was founded in late 2017 by former army officer, David Wood, and former paratrooper, Matt Wells. They had already secured orders for four units from Universe Science Park in Denmark, Merlin Entertainment’s new indoor adventure centre  at the Birmingham NEC, the Bear Grylls Adventure and at iFly in Basingstoke.

However Frontgrid wanted to quickly reach a global audience by taking a purpose-built unit to IAAPA expo, the global attractions industry show.

Reward was approached by Bathgate Business Finance, on behalf of Frontgrid, and we subsequently provided a £100k Business Finance loan to enable them to manufacture a ParadropVR unit to exhibit at the show, allowing prospective buyers the opportunity to try the product.

CEO of Frontgrid said, “Given how cutting-edge the technology is, we weren’t even sure if there would be a finance solution, but the Bathgate Business Finance team took time to understand the business. They analysed the business case, sourced the most appropriate funding method and connected us with Reward Finance Group, which was forward-thinking enough to see the opportunity.”

The show led to several orders from companies in Thailand, India, Dubai and Malaysia, leading to a rapid acceleration of growth for the company.