Foodmek set for growth following investment
Fife food processing equipment maker Foodmek is activating an ambitious growth plan after securing £500,000 funding for it from the Scottish Loan Scheme (SLS), part of the Scottish Government’s Scottish Growth Scheme.
Foodmek aims to use the loan from the SLS, which is administered by the Scottish Investment Bank, the investment arm of Scottish Enterprise, to double its turnover and increase its workforce significantly.
The loan, £300,000 of which comes in the immediate first tranche, will enable Foodmek to invest in new equipment, innovation and additional skilled engineers in its design office and factory operations. One of the design innovation items enabled by the loan will be to develop a single short filler for display at trade shows – to support Scottish small food manufacturing companies as they expand their operations.
The company is also investing in its people and plans to recruit and train more highly-skilled engineers through apprenticeships in order to boost innovation. “We are investing in people to get into innovation in a big way,” said managing director, Scot Kelly. “They are the cornerstone of our strategy.”
Foodmek has signed up to the Scottish Business Pledge – which commits it to nine key promises including paying the Real Living Wage, no inappropriate use of zero-hours contracts, action to address the gender pay gap, investing in a skilled and diverse workforce, workforce engagement and community support.
The firm is already meeting those pledges through initiatives including supporting staff through Graduate, Modern and Foundation Apprenticeships and engaging with the Fife Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) team to boost employability support for local schools.
The loan’s second instalment of £200,000 will be paid by Scottish Enterprise if Foodmek meets agreed targets by May 31 next year. Foodmek is also a member of CeeD’s ‘Growth 500’ group.
Speaking further about the good news, Scot Kelly, said: “We are naturally delighted to receive this vote of confidence in the future of Foodmek from the Scottish Loan Scheme.
“When I arrived at the company I was struck by the excellent quality of its staff, many of whom have served it well for decades. Our aim is to create a renaissance for Foodmek by forming the new generation of highly-skilled staff using internally-generated cutting-edge research and development to create sector-leading innovation in order to win new customers across existing and new sectors. This investment has pressed the start button on this exciting journey.
“Over time we see Foodmek spurring the economy of Tayport and beyond and attracting skilled people to the area.”
Kerry Sharp, director, Scottish Investment Bank, said: “Foodmek is an excellent example of a forward-thinking and progressive Scottish business. We are particularly impressed with its collaborative and innovative culture and its desire to develop its people as well as its products. We fully support Foodmek’s growth plans and hope this investment helps the company realise its ambitions.”