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£50,000 Investment funds expansion of security company: Ashton Alarms set to increase production.

Published: 30th March 2005

A growing security systems and equipment company has had its expansion and diversification plans boosted by a £50,000 loan from South Yorkshire Investment Fund.

Sheffield-based Ashton Alarms Ltd fits alarm systems and manufactures roller shutter doors and now has more than 4,000 customers in the South Yorkshire area. The company currently operates from 500 sq ft premises in Portland Street but is planning to move to a 3,500 sq ft building in Gilpin Street, off Penistone Road.

The move will enable Ashton to increase its production of security doors for offices, shops, schools and other commercial premises. It is also seeking to develop the domestic market where there is growing demand for powered security screens to cover patio doors and windows. It is also expected that the expansion will enable Ashton to increase its nine-strong workforce.

Managing Director Steve Ashton, who founded the company 18 years ago, believes the potential for providing security screens for domestic use is extensive and wants to be at the forefront of this new market.

He said: "We have outgrown our current premises and the new site will enable us to expand production of security doors and screens. There is growing demand among householders for physical barriers against intruders in addition to alarms and we are in a good position to develop this market."

"The SYIF loan has provided extra funding to help us relocate and achieve our expansion plans. SYIF have been great to deal with, they are fantastic people and really interested in supporting the business. I would certainly recommend companies to get in touch with SYIF to see if they can be of help."

Investment Manager Andrew Chaffer said: "This is a well established business with a good track record and has built up a strong customer base. It is now expanding and looking to develop new markets that hopefully should lead to extra employment opportunities and is just the sort of business that we are looking to support. "

Editor's Notes

About South Yorkshire Investment Fund

South Yorkshire Investment Fund  provided seedcorn, loan and equity linked investments, ranging from £15k to £2.5m, specifically to help small and medium businesses meet the gaps in funding they need for growth and development.

Created as part of the Objective 1 programme, the Fund is a private and public sector business finance provider. The European Regional Development Fund and Yorkshire Forward are investors in the Fund.

South Yorkshire Investment Fund also provided access to Business Angel investments from the Yorkshire Association of Business Angels and Microloans through BiG Business Loan Fund and Donbac Microloan Fund.

Finance Yorkshire has now taken on responsibility for providing gap finance in Yorkshire and the Humber.

For further details please contact Suzanne Tinkler,  on 0845 649 0000.

South Yorkshire Investment Fund Ltd is a company limited by guarantee (Registered No 3936065). South Yorkshire Investment Fund comprises three sub funds, the South Yorkshire Investment Capital Fund, the South Yorkshire Investment Development Fund, which are each managed by YFM Venture Finance Limited, and the South Yorkshire Investment Small Business Fund, which is managed by Finance South Yorkshire Ltd. YFM Venture Finance Limited (Tel 0113 294 5000) and Finance South Yorkshire Ltd (Tel 01709 386 377) are each authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority. South Yorkshire Investment Fund also provides a number of services, which are not regulated by The Financial Services Authority. These include the pilot Seedcorn Fund, BiG Business Loan Fund, Mentorbank and access to the Donbac Microloan Fund. BiG Business Loan Fund is managed by Donbac Ltd (company registration No. 01925556) and Key Fund Yorkshire Ltd (Tel 0114 242 8900).