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More than 100 firms boosted by New Anglia LEP’s Growing Business Fund

06:00 11 September 2015

One of the new machines at engineering company Ultra Precision in Haverhhill which have been part-funded by a grant from New Anglia LEP

One of the new machines at engineering company Ultra Precision in Haverhhill which have been part-funded by a grant from New Anglia LEP's Growing Business Fund.

Archant

More than 100 firms across Suffolk and Norfolk have now received grants from the Growing Business Fund, established by the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP).

A total of 114 companies have received awards totalling more than £10.7million, helping to unlock around £60.3m of private sector investment and to create 1,384 jobs.

The scheme, launched in 2013 with backing from the coalition government’s Regional Growth Fund, offers grants of £25,000 to £500,000, representing up to 20% of the expansion costs, which must create one job for every £10,000 awarded. There is also a small grants scheme which offers funding from £5,000 to £25,000.

Funding awarded so far has helped with capital projects such as new premises and production lines and paid for equipment and tools, IT software and marketing campaigns.

Successful applicants have included Haverhill-based engineering company Ultra Precision, which makes components for sectors including aerospace, robotics and motorsport and has secured three grants from the fund, totalling £135,000.

Managing director Geoff Quick said: “The grants from the Growing Business Fund have really helped drive our growth. We can now invest in the latest technologically advanced equipment to make our processes faster and more efficient.

“This will deliver opportunities to be more competitive in a global marketplace and we aim to employ a further 10 people over the next two years to achieve our goals.”

New Anglia manager director Chris Starkie said: “The LEP’s primary focus is to help drive the economic growth of Norfolk and Suffolk.

“The Growing Business Fund is key to that ambition and not only supports SMEs to thrive and create jobs, but helps them to unlock further private investment which would not be available without our financial support.

“In two years this fund has already beaten its predicted job target and through our Growth Deal with Government we have additional funding enabling the programme to run until 2021.”

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