News - 11 March 2014

Two local businesses receive grant funding and boost jobs

Two South Derbyshire businesses have been awarded grants by Derby Enterprise Growth Fund – helping them to grow their businesses and create more local jobs.

The £20 million Derby Enterprise Growth Derby Enterprise Growth Fund (DEGF) is supported by the Government’s Regional Growth Fund. Run by Derby City Council, DEGF aims to support growth and job creation in businesses in the city and surrounding area through a mix of loans and grants.

Following the latest round of DEGF grant approvals, Eclipse Automotive Technology and Appleby Woodturnings, who are both based in Swadlincote, are now forging ahead with expansion plans and will be creating several new skilled jobs in the area.

Eclipse Automotive Technology have been awarded a £70,000 grant towards a £446,000 expansion programme which will see them move to new premises in Robian Way, Swadlincote, later this month (March).

The company, which was set up in 2005, is currently based in Granary Wharf, Burton-upon-Trent, and are a leading supplier of high-tech vehicle diagnostic equipment to the commercial vehicle industry.

The new premises will include a training centre for customers to help them make better use of the diagnostic equipment that the company supplies – improving their costs and efficiency in repairing and servicing haulage vehicles.

Director Richard Parkin explained: “Our diagnostic systems are used by a wide range of commercial fleet operators and essentially keep the wheels of industry moving. 

“Without the support of Derby Enterprise Growth Fund we would not have been able to invest in this important growth of our business in the short term which could have compromised our competitive edge.”

Appleby Woodturnings has received a £33,633 grant towards its £150,000 expansion project which will incorporate an in-house recycling system to convert production waste into heating for the business.

The family business, based at Rinkway Business Park, Swadlincote, has been trading for 37 years and produces tapered wood pellets.  These are used in the construction and joinery industry, with projects ranging from Royal residencies to the Cutty Sark ship restoration and customers ranging from major national building companies through to joiners and DIY enthusiasts..

Partner John Appleby explained that the DEGF grant had enabled the business to buy the adjacent unit to expand production facilities.  It will also house the new recycling equipment that converts wood shavings into briquettes which are burned to provide heating for the expanded factory premises.  The investment will eliminate daily production waste being destined for landfill disposal.

He said: “The DEGF support has enabled us to do something in five months that would have taken five years. 

“We have always funded growth from our own income so I was hesitant to approach DEGF but delighted when we were accepted because the support we have received has been life transforming for the business. 

“The recycling plan will generate substantial savings which will be reinvested into the future growth of the business.

“The next stage will be to expand our office accommodation and expand our workforce from seven to nine people by taking on two new administrative staff, including an apprentice, to improve our efficiency and further grow the business.”

Derby City Council Leader Paul Bayliss, who chairs the DEGF panel of industry and financial experts, said: “We have had a good response from businesses in South Derbyshire who have innovative expansion plans but not always the means to fund the drivers for growth.

“Companies such as these are committed to creating new local jobs for local people and we wish them every success in the future.

“This city driven investment shows how Derby can drive jobs and employment well beyond its physical boundaries.”

Applications for the Derby Enterprise Growth Fund continue to be accepted by Derby City Council. To find out more visit: . Alternatively call 01332 641628 or email

Source: Derby Enterprise Growth Fund

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