A grant worth up to £65,000 is enabling an established Nottingham textile company to become true specialists in their field.
Capatex Limited, based in Northgate, will celebrate its 20th anniversary next year. Since it was formed in 1995, the company has evolved remarkably since its foundation as an industrial textile importer and distributor. Now, Capatex is a specialised manufacturer, converter and distributor of technical and industrial textiles and medical products. Sectors Capatex supply are as diverse as aerospace, agriculture, horticulture, automotive, aerospace and medical.
Capatex works with customers in the UK and abroad, providing a diverse range of products from industrial textiles to finished medical products.
The business is organised into four divisions, each offering customers one of the UK’s most extensive and technical product ranges within their market sectors. Its customers include Jaguar Land Rover line suppliers, the NHS, multinational medical device companies through to SMEs and even private individuals through their growing medical mail order and internet business.
In the medical sector, Capatex was the obvious choice for manufacturing The Bradford Sling, an arm immobilising and elevating sling for burns patients on behalf of Bradford University because of their expertise in converting foams, textiles and hook and loop fasteners.
The grant from Nottingham Technology Grant Fund (N’Tech) will enable the firm (of 24) to create five full-time equivalent jobs and safeguard nine full-time equivalent jobs to support anticipated growth as a result of the investment in the next two years.
It will also allow for the design and tooling of a new medical device, and the purchase of new equipment used in the manufacture of components for anti-embolism products.
N’Tech grants are geared towards the growing life science, digital content and clean technology sectors and the fund is delivered by Nottingham City Council.
The programme, launched in April 2013 has so far offered 60 grants to businesses in the Greater Nottingham area worth £7 million. There are a further 25 applications in the pipeline requesting £2.5 million and N’Tech closes to applications on 30 September 2014.
Gabriel Strauss is Managing Director at Capatex, and has a degree in Industrial Economics from the University of Nottingham. He commented: “Having the N’Tech grant is a fantastic opportunity for us to identify areas where capital investment is most needed in order to achieve growth and satisfy the increasing customer demand. The investment will ensure the security of supply of certain products where the supply chain is most vulnerable and allow us to become self-sufficient producers, allowing us to stand out amongst competitors as being an increasingly vertically integrated manufacturer.
Gabriel Strauss added: “The N’Tech application process was very straightforward and I would encourage any business owner looking for development funding to consider it. The Nottingham business scene has experienced a great boost and could really flourish if the money is successfully distributed.”
The N’Tech grant follows an Innovation grant that was awarded to Capatex last year to research alternative markets for its manufacturing facilities. The launch of Capatex Medical was the result, part-financed by the European Regional Development Fund and helped by Medilink East Midlands and is the fastest growing part of their business.
Councillor Nick McDonald, Portfolio Holder for Jobs and Growth at the City Council, said: “Nottingham is internationally known as an industrial centre for textiles, so to see this industry still operating today, in such advanced technological fields, is fantastic. Through innovation and by diversifying their offer, Capatex have built-up a remarkable specialism. It’s very much a business we’d like to see grow, and the fact they can use the N’Tech grant to expand operations and take on staff is great for the city.”
N’Tech is a core element of Nottingham City Council’s Nottingham Growth Plan delivered through its “Growing Nottingham” campaign – a blueprint for the city’s future business growth and one of the most ambitious strategies of the UK’s Core Cities. Measures introduced as part of the plan have played a key role in encouraging new business formation through various finance and support packages. The three key focus sectors outlined in the Growth Plan are creative and digital, life sciences, and clean technology.
N’Tech grants are funded solely through the Government’s Regional Growth Fund (RGF). Nottingham City Council secured RGF from the Government for grants to help fast track development of businesses based in the city. The funding can provide grants of £20,000 to £1 million per successful company to support growth and expansion.