A Doncaster construction firm aims to “future proof” its business with the help of a £100,000 loan from NPIF – Mercia Debt Finance, which is managed by Mercia and is part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund.
GNE Contracting is planning to acquire new plant to fulfil its growing order book, adopt new technology and set an example within the industry by investing in training to tackle skills shortages.
The company, which offers services from groundworks and road surfacing to landscaping and general construction, was established in 2003 by Nolan Elliott after 22 years working in a local authority. It now employs 10 permanent staff at its base in Doncaster, in addition to temporary workers and subcontractors for specific projects.
GNE built the otter enclosure and amphitheatre at Yorkshire Wildlife Park, and has recently created a new service road at Wilsic Hall and completed the installation of 180 new bin storage areas across Sheffield for the City Council.
Nolan Elliott, managing director, said: “After several years of steady growth, we have put together a package of measures to prepare the firm for the future. This loan will allow us to put our plan into action. We will be extending our range of plant and equipment, redeveloping our site in Rossington to create more space and adopting new technology such as on-site tablets to improve efficiency.
“We will also be investing heavily in training. The construction industry faces a skills shortage that could potentially threaten standards. We feel strongly that we need to lead by example to upgrade the skills of existing staff and attract and train fresh talent.”
Pete Sorsby, investment manager with Mercia, said: “GNE Contracting is a forward-thinking business which is passionate about maintaining industry standards and investing in staff. The funding will support its ongoing growth and help secure its long-term future.”
Mark Wilcockson at British Business Bank, said: “Historically, funding options for businesses in the North have been scarce, which has stifled growth and innovation in the region. NPIF is making real strides in reducing the regional funding gap between the North and the South, providing a variety of finance solutions that help businesses in the North realise their growth ambitions.”
The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund project is supported financially by the European Union using funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and the European Investment Bank.