Lombard and Regional Growth Fund support safeguards jobs

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Lombard and Regional Growth Fund support safeguards jobs

Hinckley's PRB Drainage Ltd, a drainage specialist that provides a range of services throughout the UK, is benefitting from an investment in a new mobile water treatment plant to make the business more efficient and that safeguards jobs.

They are also the first recipient of funding under the £70million Regional Growth Fund allocation to RBS - who have funded this deal through their asset finance subsidiary - Lombard.

To manage operational costs, Greenfield Business Park based PRB Drainage has bought a new mobile water treatment plant. The acquisition ensures that the business operates more efficiently, is more environmentally friendly, and most importantly reduces costs for both PRB Drainage and its customers.

Previously, tank loads of waste were taken away to be cleaned, whereas the new mobile unit now enables PRB Drainage to do this all on site. With the whole process contained in one vehicle, it is able to extract the solids from the waste, which can then be put to use as compost or the production of methane for power generation. It reduces the transportation costs with fewer vehicles on the road and less loads to empty per day, with one trip a day compared to five previously. The mobile unit is easier to use and more economical and can even recycle water to use for the onboard jet wash for jetting clean drainage systems, septic tanks, waste water treatment works, interceptor cleansing, gully cleaning and pond/lake/river cleaning.

Lombard has provided a £132k leasing agreement and arranged a £38k grant from the Regional Growth Fund to support the purchase.

The Regional Growth Fund is a £1.4bn fund operating across England from 2011 to 2014 and supports projects that utilise private investment. The aim of the Fund is to create economic growth and sustainable employment. Of the total amount available, the banks have been awarded £95m and the RBS Group, of which Lombard is the dedicated asset finance division, has been allocated £70m. PRB Drainage has been awarded one of the first bank pay outs of this kind in the country, and the first to be given out by RBS. The investment will not only safeguard two jobs for its employees but it also supports further growth and recruitment plans.

Keeley Roberts, managing director, PRB Drainage, explains, "There are not many of these machines in the country and disposal points are becoming further afield as water utility companies are making treatment sites a more specialised operation to treat waste. A typical load of sewage from a septic tank contains 80% water, the beauty of this new equipment is that it keeps giving; reducing transportation costs, carbon emissions and containing the whole process to one vehicle."

"When Lombard informed us that we were eligible for the grant, the benefits of their asset finance solution and the vehicle grew further. The lower repayments and additional funds meant we could invest more in the business. We will take people on as we grow but we can also put staff through further training and help younger employees get the qualifications and experience they need to join the team. This has helped us safeguard jobs and will create opportunities for new ones."

Lisa-Maria Ellis, senior relationship manager at Lombard in Leicester adds "For any lending there has to be a solid business plan from the customer. PRB Drainage not only had this, but its plans to support its workforce also meant it qualified for the Regional Growth Fund scheme. The extra funding made the machine more affordable by lowering the customer's monthly repayments."

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