Pacepacker Services has emerged unscathed from the rubble of small businesses that collapsed during the recession, announcing that the company has seen exports treble and UK sales increase by 35% year on year over the last 3 years.
William Davis, Barclays Business Manager for Chelmsford said of the company’s growth: "Pacepacker Services is a real success story which is very much down to the strong management team. We have been pleased to provide lending facilities to help them grow the business and look forward to continuing our relationship with them in the future."
During the peak of the recession one in eight businesses* closed down and the picture was bleak for small businesses. Those who survived faced tough conditions, including refusals for loans and overdrafts. However Pacepacker, a UK manufacturer of bagging, pick and place and robot palletising systems, stayed buoyant during this time with the help from their bank manager: “Throughout the recession, we have received good advice and guidance from our Barclays Business Manager, William Davis, who has supported us with lending facilities which have helped us grow both in the UK and overseas. William has a very good understanding of our business and this, coupled with our uptake of UK Trade & Industry export schemes and appointment of a Chinese joint venture to sell directly to the Asian market, is how we’ve successfully grown the business during a tough economic period,” says Dennis Allison, MD of Pacepacker Services.
UKTI’s Passport to Export programme, which offers assistance and support to companies developing their business overseas, helped Pacepacker create an international strategic plan. “Initially we used the UKTI Passport to Export programme, which gave us the confidence to explore unfamiliar territories including India, Romania, Norway and South Africa. Then with the support of our UKTI International Trade Adviser (ITA) we progressed to a scheme for more experienced exporters, the Gateway to Global Growth programme, and export sales leapt from 10% to 30% of our total turnover; the UKTI has been instrumental in helping us achieve this.”
ITA, Simon Fennelly, has worked with Pacepacker since 2007: “I have been pleased to advise Pacepacker, but it is their own dedication to developing international trade that has brought them the rewards they deserve.”
Although recent news of Government’s Project Merlin, an agreement with UK’s banks to loan around £76bn to small firms this year, is positive for small firms, unlike Pacepacker, many businesses feel that they have not received a good level of support and understanding in the past and may be reluctant to ask for loans.