A CLEANING company has created 10 jobs and is planning to expand more after winning eight new contracts.
Newcastle-based Edwards Commercial Cleaning Services Ltd will create another 12 jobs when it expands into Teesside in September.
Paul Edwards started the business working from his home in Jesmond in 2003 and it now employs 160 people and has an annual turnover in excess of £1.2m.
The company has recently won a number of new commercial cleaning contracts across the region in offices and factories.
And Edwards is optimistic about the future and said: “Already enquires have increased massively. The whole team has worked hard to get through the tough times at the height of the recession and we’re now starting to see the results.
The company’s expansion plans were supported by the Investment for Growth fund which helps businesses by providing finance for development and growth projects.
Edwards said: “To be able to quote for bigger contracts we needed certain ISO accreditations. We’re already fundamentally different from our competitors by providing added value to our service and while this is a huge advantage the ISO accreditations will open new doors for us.
“Investment for Growth has been able to help us get those and we can now push on and start to grow the business.”
He approached Investment for Growth after a recommendation from a business growth consultant.
Delivered by the Investment Centre, Investment for Growth was able to provide 40% of the funding needed by the business to apply for the internationally recognised accreditations. Edwards said: “I contacted Investment for Growth and within a week they had processed and accepted my application.
“The team were great to work with and I was very impressed with the support they gave me and the speed and simplicity of the application process.
“We can now push on with our expansion plans. Already we’re winning new business throughout the North East and in 2013 we’ll open an office in Leeds and create jobs in Yorkshire.”
Grants of up to 40% of the total project value are still available to firms in the North East wanting to put into place business development projects that will secure jobs and help them grow.
Tracey Watson, senior project manager of Investment for Growth, said: “So far Investment for Growth has helped over 116 North East businesses with growth projects that have boosted the regional economy as well as created and secured jobs.
“The fund is available to both new and established businesses but funds are limited so the need to apply is urgent.”