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'Jargon free and direct': supporting Thomas Howse Ltd to improve its production process

Manufacturing/Engineering
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Our Business Growth Team was pleased to help Rowley Regis manufacturer Thomas Howse access AIM for GOLD funding. This enabled the business to buy new machinery and boost its production capacity.

About Thomas Howse

Thomas Howse is an industrial paint and powder coatings firm, which manufactures decorative, industrial and specialist paint and powder coatings. Its range includes block paving and concrete sealers, scaffold and machinery ID paint, skip and refuse container paint, machine paint systems, polyurethane floor paints, gate and fencing paint systems, and chlorinated rubber paints. It also develops custom paints for its customers’ specific applications.

The company started in 1903. One hundred and twenty years later, it is still an independent family-run company operating out of Rowley Regis.

Why and how Sandwell Council helped Thomas Howse

It’s easy for machinery to become out of date. It’s less easy for smaller businesses to afford to upgrade or replace it. We helped Thomas Howse to access AIM for GOLD funding, enabling the company to buy new production machinery.

Part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund, the AIM for GOLD programme was for stimulating business resilience, recovery and/or growth in the Black Country. It combined specialist support with grant funding. Our Business Growth Team was proud to deliver it in Sandwell. Together we helped over 90 Sandwell firms with either one-to-one support, or accessing grant funding, or both.

We know businesses are key to building community wealth in Sandwell, so we’re only too happy to support in their journey to success.

Through AIM for GOLD, we helped Thomas Howse to access £29k of grant funding. This meant the company could buy new equipment, increasing its production capacity, reducing waste, reducing energy consumption and improving the whole production process.

“Hands on, jargon-free approach”

Garry Plant is General Manager of Thomas Howse. Garry said: “We really appreciated the hands on, jargon free, direct approach of the AIM for GOLD team. The process was transparent, to the point and made to measure.”

Nicy Morgan was Thomas Howse’s business mentor from our Business Growth Team. She said: “Thomas Howse has sustained livelihoods in Rowley Regis for over a century. We are so lucky to have this historic and successful firm here in Sandwell. It gave me great pleasure to help Garry and his team access and make effective use of the grant to update its machinery.

“We are delighted to hear about the efficiency of the new equipment: the savings in both time and money it is helping the team to make.”

About AIM for GOLD in Sandwell

Together with regional partners Wolverhampton, Walsall and Dudley councils, the AIM for GOLD scheme supported 292 companies and awarded over £3.2m of grant funding.

Our Business Growth Team at Sandwell Council was delighted to exceed all targets for delivering AIM for GOLD. These targets included the number of companies supported, the amount of grant funding issued and the number of new jobs generated.

In Sandwell, we helped 49 businesses access at least £1000 each in AIM for GOLD funding – with over £792,000 awarded in all. This led to the creation of ­37 new jobs and helped Sandwell companies leverage over £1.7m in private sector finance.

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