Horncastle business can continue to grow thanks to £31,000 boost

Coun Leyland and Mr Phillips EMN-140412-142213001
Coun Leyland and Mr Phillips EMN-140412-142213001

District Council funding has helped to secure the future of a Horncastle business, increase the skills of its workforce and create a new job.

Phillips Animal Health has traded as an Agricultural Merchant in the town since 1973 and has seen steady and consistent growth since then, but over the last 18 months director Paul Phillips realised that to continue this development he needed to improve the IT systems.

The business was awarded £31,772 through the Council’s Rural Development Fund – 59% of the total cost of overhauling the entire IT system.

The project has enabled the company to increase the skills of its workforce, safeguard 15 jobs and create a new full time post as a Sales Analyst with responsibility to support existing staff and also to ensure the business sees the full benefits from its investment.

Mr Phillips, said: “In all sectors, customers have rising expectations with regards to service, information availability and the general levels of professionalism that we demonstrate as suppliers. We needed to gain internal efficiencies to have a chance of meeting those needs.

“We are at a stage, as a medium sized business where IT solutions seem to be big or small – with very little in between. Therefore the scale of investment that this project required would have been very difficult for us to achieve without the Rural Development Grant funding and we are very grateful for it.”

The Council’s Portfolio Holder for Economic Development, Councillor Craig Leyland, said: “The difference that this funding has made to Phillips Animal Health is huge. It has enabled a complete overhaul of the IT systems enabling the business to move forward and continue to grow in the future. It has also seen local jobs safeguarded and the creation of a new job.”

Since being established two years ago, the Rural Development Fund has supported 23 projects with more than £638,000 of funding as well as seeing 6 new businesses created, 5 festivals, 49 jobs created and numerous volunteering opportunities across the District. The funding has also acted as a catalyst to attract nearly £800,000 of additional investment into the area.

*For more information on the Rural Development Fund which offers local businesses support through grants and interest-free loans visit www.e-lindsey.gov.uk/businessfunding or contact the Economy and Tourism team on 01507 613113.