CaptureAn ambitious Tyneside company is planning expansion on a number of different business fronts after winning six-figure investment from the Finance For Business North East Growth Fund.
 
PTM Group is a diverse Newcastle-headquartered organisation with subsidiary businesses including quantity surveying, project management and vocational training, most especially for the construction industry, through its NCT Skills subsidiary.
 
NCT is currently supporting the development of around 160 apprentices across the North East in partnership with a range of industry partners, and has built up an annual turnover of around £3m, a figure it is looking to grow through 2016 and beyond.
 
PTM has also recently set up a new division, 180 Training, which focuses on retraining and upskilling adults with a view to getting them back into employment, and its surveying arm is looking to grow its presence in the North East’s booming student accommodation development market.
 
In order to have the working capital in hand to take advantage of market opportunities for each of its businesses, the PTM management team has turned to regional fund management firm NEL Fund Managers to bring in a £300,000 Growth Fund investment.
 
Part of the capital has been used to help recruit senior staff who will help to drive the business’s development, with well-known finance professional Simon McIntosh coming in as the Group’s finance director, and Ian Wood and Patricia Wilkinson, who both have vast experience in the vocational training sector, have joined as directors of 180 Training and NCT Skills respectively.
 
Ten new jobs have been created by PTM over the last year, to take the total number of people employed across the Group to around 30, and more new position are expected to be created as the business expands.
 
Jamie Paterson, co-founder of PTM Group, says: “The focus that’s grown up in recent years around vocational training and skills development has opened up commercial opportunities on which we’ve been able to capitalise very well, but we know there is a lot more potential in NCT Skills and 180 Training businesses for us to realise.
 
“Having this working capital behind us will mean we can go after the best opportunities available to us over the medium and long-term, rather than just working in the short-term on projects that we can afford to undertake at that moment.
 
“Having the right senior staff is crucial in making this happen as efficiently and effectively as we can, and Simon, Ian and Patricia all bring high-level skills and experience with them that will directly impact on how we implement our development plans.
 
“We looked at the different sources of capital available in the market, and not only has working with NEL proved to be the right financial option for us, the team’s commercial approach and knowledge has provided invaluable support around honing our structure and business plans.”
 
Simon Johnson, senior investment executive at NEL Fund Managers, adds: “PTM Group has many strings to its bow, and has clear strategies in place to make the most of every opening available to it which we’ve been very pleased to be able to support through the Growth Fund.”
 
Aimed at regional businesses which are at a development and growth stage, the Growth Fund forms part of the wider Finance for Business North East Fund.
 
Managed by North East Finance, it will see £125m of investment capital injected into the region by the European Investment Bank and the European Regional Development Fund 2007-13 over a five year period.
 
NEL is looking to make around 130 investments over the five-year life span of the Growth Fund, and is actively looking to speak to ambitious north east companies with robust business plans.
 
For more information about NEL’s investment criteria, visit www.nel.co.uk or contact the investment team on 0845 111 1850.
 
The ERDF 2007-13 programme is bringing over £300m into North East England to support innovation, enterprise and business support.  It will help create and safeguard 28,000 new jobs, start 3,000 new businesses and increase the region’s productivity by £1.1bn per annum.