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BGF makes investment in Teesside recycling business

Business Growth Fund (BGF), the independent company established to help Britain’s growing businesses, has invested GBP7.5m growth capital in J&B Recycling. 

This is the first Teesside investment from BGF, which has a regional investment team based in Leeds. It follows an GBP8m investment previously made into Durham-based community pubs estate, Wear Inns.
Operating from two recycling facilities in Hartlepool and a waste transfer station in Middlesbrough, J&B Recycling provides waste collection, recovery and recycling services to both public and private sector organisations throughout the North East. Customers include local authorities, housing authorities, commercial, industrial and also other waste companies who use J&B’s facilities to recycle their customers’ wastes. J&B Recycling diverts waste away from landfill by increasing the levels and types that can be recycled and reduces the cost of waste removal for its customers.
J&B Recycling operates in a sector that is subject to strong regulatory growth drivers. Current EU and UK government policy aims to divert as much waste as possible away from costly and capacity-constrained landfill sites, into recycling and recovery. 
The company is run by female entrepreneur Vikki Jackson-Smith, who established the recycling business in 2000 to diversify from the solid fuels business that her father Alan Jackson had originally established in the 1970s. Since then, the business has grown to an annual turnover of circa GBP10m and employs 175 people.
BGF’s growth capital will enable the company to develop an additional recycling facility in Middlesbrough for treating commercial waste, as well supporting further expansion at existing facilities where household waste is treated. This will in turn create further new jobs across Teesside.
Following the investment, current non-executive director Ross Smith will take on the role of non-executive chairman. Ross was formerly CEO of 3i backed MDC Technology and chairman of CSL Dualcom.
Richard Taylor, investment director at Business Growth Fund, says: “J&B has developed from a small business into a reputable, established ethical recycling and waste management company, with an extremely strong family management team. Vikki is an excellent role model for aspiring female entrepreneurs, as she has built a business with longevity and the prospects for excellent future growth.
“We are also pleased to extend our portfolio into Teesside, increasing our investment momentum in the North East where we are seeing increasing activity.”
Vikki Jackson-Smith, managing director of J&B Recycling, says: “I am delighted J&B has secured a significant investment from BGF to help execute our very exciting growth plans. We believe BGF will be the ideal partner for us – they take a long term view and are experienced investors in family businesses.”
“J&B has always viewed itself as an innovator within the industry, from our early days of recycling glass bottles to the development of our state-of-the-art materials recycling facility. This investment will further enhance our reputation as we look to collect, recover and recycle more and more waste to put to new uses.”
A team at Cavu Corporate Finance, led by director Shawn Bone and Thomas Brunsnes advised J&B on the deal.
Bone says: “J&B is a great business and with the equity being made available by BGF, the company will go from strength to strength and deliver its ambitious plans in the waste sector. There was significant interest in providing equity to J&B but BGF's straightforward approach and long-term view meant they were better suited to provide investment.”

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