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Burntwood pest control company boosted by support fund

A Burntwood business is soaring after being boosted by a new support fund.

Millenium Falcons has been helped by Staffordshire County Council support after banks snubbed its expansion plans.

The £1million Staffordshire Business Support Fund was set up last November and is already helping nine companies acrss the county.

Cllr Mike Lawrence with Graham Rees

Cllr Mike Lawrence with Graham Rees

Millennium Falcons is a pest control company specialising in the use of birds of prey to tackle vermin. Owner Graham Rees wanted to expand his three-year-old business by taking on contracts in Birmingham and Sandwell. However, his bank turned his request for finance down.

He explained:

“My local chamber of commerce suggested the Staffordshire Business Support Fund after we were turned down by the banks.”

A £25,000 loan has enabled him to take on another member of staff, increasing the business to five people plus 16 birds of prey.

Graham continued:

“Although some of the new contracts are now are outside Staffordshire, everyone that works for us comes from within the county. We’re a small business and it’s important that we work closely together and draw from our local communities. And we’re also supporting our local economy.”

The Staffordshire Business Support fund is being delivered by the Black Country Reinvestment Society (BCRS) and local businesses with up to 50 employees can apply for loans of £10,000 to £50,000.

Mike Lawrence, the county council’s Cabinet member for Economy, Skills and Enterprise, said:

“Businesses nationally are not finding the support they need from the banks and it’s also evident that some are struggling to find the information they need on Government support. Our fund is accessible and as has made real difference to nine county businesses in its first three months.

“Many well-run businesses have been finding it increasingly difficult to stay afloat through the recession. Quite often customers may fail to pay on time, but suppliers still need to be paid. The ability to keep cash flow running will determine whether the business survives or fails – and if it fails, that means jobs lost.

“This partnership will pump public funding directly to supporting local businesses and retain local jobs at a time of great need.”

Anyone wanting to find out more about the fund can call 0845 313 8410

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