Finance Yorkshire backs property technology firm

Left to right, Ian Atkinson of Finance Yorkshire, Martin Bell of Red Sky and Terry and Rachel Lightfoot of TouchRight Software

A software provider that enables property professionals and letting agents to produce high quality reports for landlords has received financial backing from Finance Yorkshire.

TouchRight Software, based in York, was founded by husband and wife Terry and Rachel Lightfoot, who came up with the idea while running an inventory services business.

The couple found traditional paper reports inflexible and time-consuming so they pioneered TouchRight, which instantly generates professional reports from a laptop, PC or mobile device.

Finance Yorkshire has supported the growth of TouchRight Software with a £50,000 Business Loan – the first investment from its Extension Fund, which is backed by a total of £5 million from the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and Sheffield City Region LEP.

The business funder is on the lookout for further investment opportunities in businesses in the Leeds and Sheffield city regions that require gap funding to realise their growth ambitions.

TouchRight has more than 1,000 users including letting agents, property services providers, councils, universities and contract cleaners.

The company will use the funding to grow its customer base though additional software development and targeted marketing to industry sectors. The investment will enable the company to employ at least two people including an in-house developer.

Terry Lightfoot said: “It takes time to produce high quality, detailed reports for landlords. These are often still transcribed by hand and can end up sat on desks for days while agents go about their busy jobs.

“We thought there was a better way than the traditional pen, paper and camera method. Our software and app not only saves paper but gives people the power to send fully customised reports to landlords on the same day as the inspection.”

TouchRight Software is based at the Hiscox Business Club in York city centre. Insurance provider Hiscox provides space in its building for selected, local businesses and entrepreneurs free of charge, including desks, meeting rooms, wi-fi and refreshments.

The company was introduced to Finance Yorkshire by business adviser Martin Bell of Red Sky who also assisted the company with its funding application.

Ian Atkinson, investment manager at Finance Yorkshire, said: “Terry and Rachel are passionate about bringing the latest technology to the property world. They have built this business from scratch and already have some impressive names as clients. Now they need to take their software to the next level, which is exactly what our investment will help them to do.”

Roger Marsh OBE, Chair of the LEP, said: “We contributed to the Finance Yorkshire extension fund to demonstrate our commitment to give practical support to SMEs in the Leeds City Region to access finance and grow.

“The investment in TouchRight Software to develop innovative products is a clear example of how such finance can make a difference by creating jobs and laying the foundations for further expansion.”

Since its inception in 2010, Finance Yorkshire has invested in more than 470 companies, enabling those businesses to increase their turnover by a total of £470 million and attract a further £290 million from private sector sources. Finance Yorkshire investment has helped those SMEs to create and safeguard more than 14,000 jobs in the region.

Note: this news article is from Finance Yorkshire’s previous fund. Read more about Finance Yorkshire