A Newton Aycliffe injection moulding firm says it plans to double turnover to £4m after receiving grant support.
Formula Plastics has worked with NEL Fund Managers to bring in a £100,000 investment from the North East Small Loan Fund, supported by the European Regional Development Fund, via the Recovery Loan Scheme, as it looks to regain ground lost during the pandemic.
The Aycliffe Business Park-based firm manufactures high tolerance precision components which are used by companies in a growing range of sectors, including automotive, engineering, lighting and electronics.
Having diversified its customer base and enhanced its business development resources, Formula Plastics is now aiming to take its current £2m turnover up to around £4m by the end of next year, with up to 20 new jobs set to be created as the business grows.
Formula Plastics’ relationship with NEL goes back to 1996, when it provided start-up funding to get the business going.
The new Small Loan Fund investment is the seventh time that the two organisations have worked together, with Formula having successfully exited their most recent agreement in 2015.
John Suggate, chairman at Formula Plastics, said: “In common with many companies, the last few years have proved challenging for us, but we’re now see signs of improvement across all the sectors in which we’re active and want to capitalise on the opportunities this provides.
“The high standards to which we’ve always worked and the quality of the work that we deliver are being recognised and welcome by clients in a growing range of industries, and we’re seeing our order book filling up across all the markets in which we’re active.”
The firm’s managing director Geoff Hodgson added: “We have a highly experienced and long-serving workforce that has the skills and knowledge required to not only deliver the specialist services that our customers require, but also to help them solve problems that would otherwise impact on their business’s operations.
“Our relationship with NEL has been a crucial factor in the business’s success over more than a quarter of a century and it made clear sense to talk to them once again about this latest stage of our development.”
Jonathan Armitage, investment executive at NEL Fund Managers, said: “Formula Plastics has a proven heritage in a specialised sector, as well as a high-quality management team that we know very well.
“It’s great to be working with them once again and to see that their ambition to grow and create new North-East jobs remains undimmed.”
Part of the £120m North-East Fund and aimed predominantly at smaller SMEs, the £9m North East Small Loan Fund typically offers loans of between £10,000 and £100,000 to businesses in Tyne & Wear, Durham and Northumberland.
It is designed to assist with the creation of over 1,200 new regional jobs in more than 320 SMEs over the life of the fund.
The overarching £120m North East Fund will provide financial support for more than 600 businesses, creating around 2,500 jobs and delivering a legacy of up to £80m for further investment into the region.
• Pictured above (left) John Suggate and (right) Geoff Hodgson of Formula Plastics with Jonathan Armitage of NEL Fund Managers.