Posted on 22nd October 2019
Category: Case Studies

Purex International Ltd are a Thorne (South Yorkshire) based SME.

“Purex have over 30 years of supplying fume extraction solutions. A world expert in its field, Purex is renowned for the quality and reliability of its technology and unrivalled customer support.”

Business was established in 1985 and has enjoyed steady growth and expansion during this time. Incorporated 2004.

Business needs at initial contact
Initial enquiry into the Humber LEP (Business Development Manager Phil Glover) and referred to East Riding Growth Hub Business Advisor Chris Moore

The initial enquiry related to the expansion of their business and the establishment of a new manufacturing facility. The key driver for this change was to secure the long term future of the business. Manufacturing was currently undertaken by a European company and there was concern this may not be a sustainable relationship. The desire was to bring the manufacturing element under the direct control of Purex in the UK

Various locations were considered. There was strong desire to be located with easy access to the Thorne operations. Goole or Brough were options, with Brough preferred due to the history of skilled manufacturing labour. A site was identified on the old British Aerospace site in Brough. The business was looking for minimum 40,000sq feet and an existing building as there was a need for production to commence within 6 months. Significant skilled job opportunities would be created in an area that has seen a decline over recent years. There was a gap in funding the project, so help from the Humber Business Growth Hub was requested to look at funding opportunities to help bring it fruition.

What the Growth Hub agreed to do with the business
Agreed to explore capital funding to support the project. As the proposed move was to the East Riding of Yorkshire the business was eligible to apply for grant funding through Humber LEP’s Growing the Humber (GTH) and York, North Yorkshire and East Riding LEP’s scheme ‘Let’s Grow’.

Growth Hub Advisor Chris Moore and Purex MD Trefor Jones met to discuss the expansion plans in the context of the requirements of both schemes. It was decided it would beneficial to apply for both at the same time to see how each progressed, as the business met the criteria for each scheme. The hope at the outset was the business would be successful with both and then decide which offer to accept.

Chris Moore guided the business through the grant application process, working with the MD to the draft the key documentation and prepare all required supporting information.

The support that took place
A series of face to face meetings were held between Chris Moore and company MD Trefor Jones, plus regular phone and email correspondence between them. They worked closely to ensure the required information was prepared but was also submitted to fit the timescales and processes of the two schemes, to maximise the chance of an offer being made by each at the same time.

Outcomes that were achieved
Offers were made by both schemes though for different amounts of grant funding.
Business decided to accept the higher Let’s Grow offer of £131,000 grant on total project cost of £904,000.

The relationship between the business and the Humber Business Growth Hub started in April 2018 and the new facility at Brough was acquired at the end of August that year.

The period up until Christmas was dedicated to fitting out the premises, purchasing and installing the equipment and training.

Manufacturing output began in January 2019.

As of today 16 new jobs have been created. These include:
• 1 Production manager
• 3 CAD technicians
• 1 Laser operator
• 1 Press Brake operator
• 1 Logistics/driver
• 1 Linisher
• 2 General assembly workers
• 3 Skilled welders
• 3 Apprentices

With Growth Hub support the business also made contact with local apprenticeship provider HETA to help recruit the apprentices for the new manufacturing facility.

How the company valued the Growth Hub service
Company very appreciative of the GH support and commented that the Growth Hub provided:

‘Valuable conduit to funding support’

They felt that without support they wouldn’t have been able to navigate through the different schemes, even though they comfortably met all eligibility criteria.

‘Good practical and structured support was available at all stages of the process’

Business was also appreciative of the support from the two funding schemes during the application process and afterwards.

This case study demonstrates the efficacy of the Humber Growth Hub and its business advisors – in this case when working with an out-of-area business that was exploring the set-up of a new manufacturing facility in the Humber region. The Growth Hub advisor helped the business to access substantial capital grant funding which led to the establishment of the new facility, and with it 16 jobs were created. Without Growth Hub support to navigate the funding landscape and to secure grant funding it may not have been assured that the business chose to invest in the Humber region and create 16 jobs and provide other supply chain benefits. Therefore the Growth Hub is a key part of the business support landscape in the region when it comes to securing inward investment