- Newberry International and Smootheelicious secure funding deal worth £2.9m
- The firm plans to open a new UK factory
- International expansion and product development in pipeline
Newberry International Produce has embarked on significant growth with financial backing from our asset based lending team and NatWest.
We structured a £2.9 million facility against the company’s invoices and inventory to assist the rapid growth of the business, which has a turnover in excess of £10million. Newberry's significant growth plans include the addition of a new factory site next to the existing one on Newent Business Park in Gloucestershire, which will be used to bring production over to the UK from Europe – creating 10 new jobs by the end of the year.
The company also plans to expand internationally, exporting products to Australia, the Middle East and many European countries, as well as launching a new frozen protein smoothie.
Specialising in the import and export of a variety of frozen fruit and vegetables for the food manufacturing sector, Newberry is owned by award winning entrepreneur Gill Pearson. It was Gill’s determination that saw her launch her own innovative product, selling frozen smoothie sachets in 2002 when she was 19 years old, after the idea was rejected by her then financial director at Newberry International Produce.
Gill established a new division concentrating on the smoothie and juice bar industry and within six months was recording a turnover of £1million. Today Gill successfully runs the company, which she purchased fully in 2012.
Two years later, she launched her very own premium, triple award-winning brand Smootheelicious alongside her current white label production for other operators, which provides fruit and vegetable pre-portioned frozen smoothie packs.
Gill Pearson, Managing Director of Newberry International Produce and Smootheelicious, said:
This is a really exciting time for both businesses. The frozen fruit and vegetable market is continuing to expand as the focus remains on nutrition and healthy eating, which is presenting us with a variety of opportunities, both at home and overseas. In response to this we are launching a new frozen protein smoothie that uses 100% natural ingredients and moves us into the health, fitness and nutritional markets.
Opening a new factory based in Newent is also important and brings new jobs to my local area. Our existing production units are based on the continent but we wanted one here so that we can have product development at our fingertips.
I am really pleased with support from Royal Bank of Scotland’s asset based lending team and NatWest. Due to the importing nature of our business we have to pay for stock up front and then can wait up to two months for payment. We've been using invoice discounting, which has really helped with cash flow because it gives an advance on invoices. The new facility complements this really well and gives us added flexibility because it is secured against our assets – so as these grow, so does the funding line. The working capital provision from this facility gives us extra confidence to grow the business and is helping to support our growth strategy with the new factory and product development.
Mark Tunley, Business Development Director, Royal Bank of Scotland Asset Based Lending, said:
We are pleased that we have been able to provide Gill with a funding deal that will support the growth strategies in place for both Newberry International Produce and Smootheelicious. The availability of working capital is an issue faced by most businesses. Borrowing to increase liquidity is a significant part of today’s corporate environment and asset based lending is a cost-effective, flexible alternative for companies.
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