Invest ESSEX, which was previously the in-house inward investment service for Essex County Council (ECC), has now become an independent investment promotion agency (IPA) and business support service. It will deliver an enhanced service through a recently announced £2.2million project. The project will be part funded by ECC and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and will be managed by the Let’s Do Business Group which already delivers the inward investment service in East Sussex and the Business East Sussex Growth Hub.

Invest ESSEX will be expanding its portfolio to include inward investment in the digital and creative sectors as well as providing support to small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs). The ERDF funding will enable support to provide 180 jobs within SMEs with additional funding from ECC supporting jobs across all businesses sizes. The investment in projects will see 5,000 new jobs to the county and help 50 new businesses relocate to Essex.

Man signing paperwork

“We are delighted to take over management of the Invest Essex service. The team have already demonstrated their ability and proactive support within the Essex business community. Through our involvement we will further enhance and develop the service by additionally providing support to start-up businesses and providing an access to finance service, helping new and established businesses to find the right financial support to help businesses to start and grow.”

Graham Marley
Chief Executive
Let's Do Business Group

Securing investment and businesses into the county

Essex is a location with huge opportunities for businesses and investors alike and the county has been attracting attention from overseas investors with investments in projects ranging from £250-£300 million in value. Invest ESSEX, who already have a proven track record of inward investment into Essex going back over 10 years, have recently assisted…

Amazon – set to open one of the UK’s largest warehouses in Essex this year. The four storey warehouse will be one of Amazon’s biggest developments in the South East of England. Amazon will be a key tenant at the London Distribution Park development at the Port of Tilbury occupying a new four storey 550,000sq ft (51,100sq m) warehouse. Once completed, the warehouse will provide over 2 million sq ft (186,000sq m) of floorspace and is expected to create over 3,500 jobs once fully operational.

Antonov Airlines – the airline division of the large Ukrainian enterprise Antonov Company, which owns and operates the world’s largest aircraft the Antonov AN-225 “Mriya”, and a fleet of AN-124-100 freighters, has established a UK office at London Stansted Airport. This is part of a plan to increase flights of its supersized transporters to British airports and worldwide.

Antonov Airlines

Arecor – leading biopharmaceutical company Arecor has chosen Chesterford Research Park as the location from which to expand and grow their portfolio of products to enable improved treatments for diabetes care.

Enplas – one of the largest independent manufacturers of engineered plastics, has chosen to open its first research and development (R&D) facility outside of Japan in Essex. It is strategically located at the heart of the London Stansted Cambridge corridor which is proving to be a key location for life sciences companies.

Evonetix – biopharmaceutical drug discovery and development company, Evonetix, is the latest company to move to Chesterford Research Park where they join major bioscience players such as AstraZeneca and Domainex who have all chosen Chesterford as the base from which to advance their research and development. Evonetix is the third life sciences company Invest ESSEX have assisted to take space at Chesterford Research Park.

Chesterford Research Park

Metro Bank – an independent bank focused on providing the best in service and convenience to its customers opened its 47th store in the country in Colchester. This was the second Metro Bank store to open in Essex in a period of three weeks. Since opening their first store in central London six years ago, Metro Bank has expanded to having 47 stores across the UK mainly based in the South East.

“Essex is a county of opportunity, we are well ahead of the UK average in terms of start-ups of new enterprises and are now receiving interest from a number of high profile large companies with projects valuing up to £300million. Essex is the 8th largest economy in the UK and so this investment is crucial in supporting businesses develop and grow in Essex and in supporting the economy more generally. Invest Essex are well placed to help support this work given their track record, including the opening of one of Amazon’s largest warehouses in the UK. Invest Essex were instrumental in the early stages of this project identifying the location for Amazon at the London Distribution Park at Thurrock.”

Cllr Kevin Bentley
Cabinet Member for Economic Growth, Skills, Infrastructure & the Digital Economy
Essex County Council

Enabling economic growth through investment

As part of the South East Invest project Invest Essex will continue to work in partnership with local enterprise partnerships, councils, universities and the private sector as it works to deliver a pipeline of inward investments. It will also offer affordable rental space for new businesses to help them establish themselves in the county through the Essex Technology and Innovation Centre (Ongar Business Centre) in Ongar.

South East Invest delivers inward investment for Essex and East Sussex and is part funded by the 2014 to 2020 European Regional Development Fund Programme.

ERDF logo

For more information about Invest Essex please visit

For more information on the Ongar Business Centre visit