Services: micro-finance, property management, supply chain services, problem-solving, carbon reduction

The Aston Reinvestment Trust: helping small and medium businesses

An Aston Commission, set up by Sir Adrian Cadbury years ago, had several findings; one was that people in the area were unable to get bank loans to start or improve businesses because they had no form of security to offer. To address this, a revolving fund – the Aston Reinvestment Trust [ART] – was established. When loans are repaid the money can help another business and profit is reinvested in the company.

Over the years it has created or retained more than 4000 jobs in the city. 

Steve Walker, ART’s Chief Executive, explains that its aim is to ensure that viable small businesses, unable to access a bank loan, could access up to £50,000 to help them survive, diversify or grow.

Originally lending to businesses and social enterprises operating in the most disadvantaged areas of Birmingham, including Aston, ART now covers Birmingham and Solihull. Read more here.

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Johnson Fellows, chartered surveyors, serve industry

johnson fellows salway

Johnson Fellows is one of the leading independently owned chartered surveyors in the UK with over 30 staff specialising in industrial, offices and retail.

The business which is about to celebrate its 30th anniversary, has acquired Salway Bradbury and will now be able to provide a greater range of specialist services in retail, office and industrial agency as well as development consultancy and acquisition advice.
The range will include acquisitions, disposals, rating, building services, rent reviews, lease renewals, management, valuation and project management.
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Problem solving, see the Success Foundry:

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When Philip Meredith set up Morefresh eight years ago it was with one objective, to provide locally produced ethically sourced products. The company has, since its inception purchased milk from Wells Farm near Stafford, originally dairy farmers who sold their milk to a large processor. Mr Meredith knows Paul Holt the owner and his family.

Morefresh has never jumped between suppliers to obtain the cheapest price because of a genuine belief that the milk they sell is of a superior quality and provides the best value for money.


Encraft offers commercially viable low carbon energy technology

Leamington-based Encraft makes low carbon energy technologies for buildings more commercially viable in the UK by reducing the costs of high quality independent technical advice. The company delivers high quality engineering and technical services to thousands of customers.

Manufacturing companies in the West Midlands are presented with new opportunities available in purchasing, managing and reducing energy for their sites. Measures which do not entail a large capital outlay are outlined and information is given about opportunities available to West Midlands-based SMEs to reduce energy costs.


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