The Business Exchange Swindon & Wiltshire October 2014 - Page 4

BUSINESS NEWS Government Grants for Wiltshire The Government’s Gateway for Growth programme has now ploughed £750,000 into Wiltshire businesses following the scheme’s third batch of grants. The latest round of investment is expected to create 60-plus sustainable jobs to support projects worth £1.2million around the county. Among the beneficiaries were Trowbridge wedding gift specialists Prezola, recipients of £50k to enhance its digital presence. Swindon-based OATS, suppliers of information and productivity solutions for oil companies around the world including Shell, Exxon Mobil and BP Castrol received a grant of £31k to aid the development of a new front-end tool, creating seven jobs. Roger Lewis Furniture of Trowbridge has received a grant of £5k to support the purchase of machinery to improve production speed and capacity. Apsley Precision Engineering Ltd, based at High Post, Salisbury, is a sub-contract precision engineering company, specialising in machined components and assemblies for the defence, oil, gas and scientific industries. Their grant of £33k will be used to acquire further machinery to expand the business and create four new jobs. ISN were awarded £29k to support its plans to create a leading Network Operations Centre and Cricklade’s Loadpoint Ltd received £50k to increase its sub-contract cutting capacity. Torchlight Solutions in Swindon secured £45k to improve its service offering, Salisbury kitchen specialists Guild Anderson will use its grant of £11k to upgrade its design software and Southern Tank Services in the south of the county has an ambitious plan to increase sales as a result of its £20k award. The UK’s Most Innovative And Forward-Thinking Businesses Are In Swindon. Swindon-based Neptune has been crowned a UK National Winner of HSBC Global Connections 2014 an initiative to find the country’s most innovative and forward-thinking businesses. The company picked up its award at a prestigious ceremony held at Cameron House in Loch Lomond, Scotland. An international lifestyle brand that designs and manufactures handcrafted furniture and accessories for the home, Neptune was unveiled as one of two winners in the SME category for companies with a turnover of up to £30million. The business was selected from thousands of entries from across the UK to become one of the 15 regional winners invited to attend the UK National Final event, hosted by Katie Derham. The company is forecasting a 25 per cent growth in business through an increased online presence and 10 new stores across the UK and North East Europe. John Sims-Hilditch, co-founder of Neptune, said: “We’re delighted and humbled by winning this award. It was something that we truly wanted to win but felt it was going to be incredibly hard with such amazing talent here. “This means a huge amount to the business. We’re planning to build a business that will last a long time and this will help build the DNA that we are a special business. The staff will take a lot from that.” Each of the national finalists joined other regional finalists from across the UK on a HSBC ‘International Exchange’ visit to Turkey, where they gained an insight into the opportunities to trade with that market and meet other like-minded individuals. In addition to the International Exchange, the winning businesses can gain access to lending facilities up to £6m, linked to a financial reward of up to £240,000 (£120,000 for the other finalists). We are always keen to hear your business news to feature in this section. If you have something happening in your business do let us know so we may feature it in the magazine and/or on our online websites. Send your stories to: 4 THE BUSINESS EXCHANGE 2014