Blackpool Business benefits from Lancashire Business Growth Fund
Established for over 10 years and with 30 staff based in Lancashire, Challenger Technology Ltd is a small group of companies made up of Gconnect Technology Ltd, Infinium IT Ltd, it’s division Clarity Wireless and currently has a turnover of £3 million; they plan, implement and manage the IT infrastructure, predominantly in the leisure industry.
Paul Billington, a Director of Challenger Technology based at Infinium IT, Bispham, Blackpool which has an in-house team of 20 staff offering a 24/7 helpdesk service as well as operating a team of countrywide field engineers, spoke to Blackpool Unlimited and said the help from the Lancashire Business Growth Fund grant will enable the upgrade of internal systems by linking sales, marketing and accounting departments together for added efficiency across the group, creating 5 jobs in Blackpool.
Paul said they are already into the first year of a 5 year plan and are on target to have a 10 million turnover by 2020 and a staff workforce of 120.
As well as working with 3 of the top 5 park operators, Infinium IT and Clarity Wireless have also provided services to CarFest for the past three years, an annual motoring festival founded by the radio presenter Chris Evans which raises funds for Children in Need.
Paul said “Any business thinking of expanding should apply to the growth fund. It’s relatively simple to do and can really help.”
Cllr Mark Smith, Blackpool Council’s cabinet member for business and economic development echoed the calls for businesses to apply.
“Every business owner knows that you’ll explore every avenue for grants and funding that you might be entitled to.
“The Lancashire Business Growth Fund is a great opportunity for anybody looking to expand their company in the year ahead and I’d encourage everybody to find out more about it.”
The Regional Growth Fund-supported Lancashire Business Growth Fund is a programme offering capital investment grants and international trade support to businesses across the county. The programme is intended to create 600 new jobs and safeguard a further 200.
Its key aim is to accelerate the creation of sustainable jobs by encouraging companies to bring forward growth projects on a bigger scale with a larger impact at a time when those jobs are most needed.
Businesses bidding for grants from the scheme can claim up to 20 per cent of the total project costs with the remaining costs leveraged from the bank or investment.
To be eligible for the programme, projects must involve the acquisition of new premises, infrastructure, machinery, expansion or another suitable form of capital investment.
To date, LBGF has awarded 51 grants, totalling £3.6m, across Lancashire. Click here for more details and to apply
The Regional Growth Fund (RGF) has supported eligible projects and programmes raising private sector investment to create economic growth and lasting employment. It has invested £2.7 billion to help businesses in England to grow and is expected to create or safeguard 557,000 jobs by the mid-2020s.