Shaun Lowthorpe, Business editor
Friday, July 4, 2014
Specialist Norfolk food manufacturer Frank Dale Foods is aiming for fresh growth after securing £675,000 through an innovative funding package aimed at helping small businesses.
The firm, based at Bunwell, near Attleborough brokered the deal which sees it draw down cash in the form of a loan from Finance East, a grant from the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership, and new equity which came mostly from Cambridge Capital Group (CCG).
One of the UK’s leading SME food manufacturers, it has built a reputation over 20 years as a specialist in miniaturising British classics for foodservice and an increasingly wider range of sectors.
Products range from hand-finished savoury and sweet canapés, traditional stone-oven-baked Quiche Pickups and a range of ‘Truly British’ one-bite mini cakes, including the classic Mini Victoria Sponge – as served at the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee at Sandringham in June 2012.
Chairman Nigel Cushion brokered the funding deal and said the firm, which has a turnover of £3.5m and employs 35 staff, will use the cash to maintain growth with existing customers, develop the business into new markets, enhance and upgrade production lines and improve production and stock efficiencies.
He said the last six years has seen the firm move from the kithcen table to the boardroom table as it has grown and matured. Today its purpose built factory has 50pc more production capacity for new markets and export.
The move was set to create 15 new jobs by the end of the year and help the company to double its turnover in the next five years.
He said: “We are delighted to have raised more than our target, in fact we were oversubscribed, and turned some funding away. We are particularly looking forward to working with our new shareholders and board to capture the exciting market opportunities both in the UK and overseas.
“The funding will release Frank Dale to maintain their impressive growth record and move on to the next stage of the growth journey.”
Stuart Ager, senior fund manager at Finance East, said: “To survive and thrive in the recent economic climate, businesses have needed to find a way to stand out in their market, or indeed, venture into new markets. Frank Dale Foods has been successful in both these areas, through its innovative produce distinguishing it from competitors and in developing additional product
ranges to address new market opportunities.”
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