18 March 2016 13:15
Growth Funding for Falmouth Marine Business
A Falmouth-based marine business has been successful in accessing funding for business growth from alternative finance lender, SWIG Finance.
Feritech accessed funding via SWIG Finance from the South West Loans Fund, part-financed by the Convergence European Regional Development Fund for businesses in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly with growth potential which are unable to access suficient funding from commercial sources.
Launched in 2012 by husband and wife team, Robert and Gemma Ferris, Feritech is a geotechnical equipment specialist and innovator for sub-sea and harsh environment technology.
Co-founder Gemma Ferris, 32 says:
“Feritech creates bespoke products, predominantly for the offshore industries, oil and gas, renewables, ports and harbours and cable companies.
“Robert and I were both employed in the offshore survey sector and felt that with our practical experience of using the kit and engineering backgrounds we could improve on the equipment that was being offered in the field so we decided to leave and start out own venture.”
Since its inception four years ago, Feritech now has five full time employees, as well as working extensively with other freelancers and specialists based in Cornwall for specific projects. With the opportunity to expand into a gap in the market, Feritech approached SWIG Finance for financial support to develop a new piece of equipment for sale or hire.
The technology is geotechnical survey equipment which includes vibrocorers, cone penetration testing, thermal conductivity and all the most popular sediment sampling grabs and corers. The new development by Feritech combines these elements into a single unit, potentially offering thousands of pounds worth of savings to companies over the course of a project.
“We saw there was a gap in the market for the piece of equipment we wanted to develop.
“When we get a good idea we need to progress it to market as swiftly as possible. Oil prices are low and so equipment that can save money on essential tasks will sell. Our latest innovative system is unique and we wanted to get it built and marketed before another company did so we approached SWIG Finance for the funding".
“The support from SWIG Finance has been invaluable and we’ve had a lot of interest already in the technology.”
In 2015 SWIG Finance lent just under £5 million to 430 businesses across the region. In the last 12 months, 72 growing South West businesses have received over £2 million in essential finance with 31 of those businesses based in Cornwall and the Isle of Scilly.
Managing Director of SWIG Finance, John Peters says:
“Our objective is to support businesses which need access to finance which find themselves unable to get it from the usual commercial sources.
“Feritech is an excellent example of a dynamic, growing Cornish business which required investment in order to move forward and we wish them every success with the future of their business.”