EcoPlasticsECO Plastics' Hemswell site
Hemswell-based plastic bottle recycler, ECO Plastics, has announced the completion of a £6 million funding to finance continued expansion over the coming year.
Existing shareholders Ludgate Environmental Fund and Robeco SAM Private Equity have both participated, providing capital which ECO Plastics states will be dedicated to short-term added-value expansion opportunities. The company’s existing debt provider, Close Brothers, is also said to have committed additional working capital facilities to support growing sales revenues.
Capable of processing 150,000 tonnes of mixed plastics a year, including some 40,000 tonnes of bottle-grade rPET pellet, ECO Plastics’ claims its North Lincolnshire site is already the largest and most sophisticated of its kind in the world.
The funding round is the second that ECO Plastics has embarked upon within the last 18 months, following a successful £24 million raise in July 2011. Those monies were used to finance ECO Plastics’ Continuum joint venture with Coca-Cola Enterprises, a landmark agreement which more than doubled the UK’s rPET production. In February, the company also announced a £1.5 million loan from WRAP to expand its rigid plastic sorting facilities.
Commenting on the announcement, Jonathan Short, Managing Director of ECO Plastics said: “ECO Plastics is now ready to tackle another period of rapid growth. We have made huge progress over the last three years and this investment leaves us ideally positioned to continue to develop our state-of-the-art facilities and to take advantage of any other expansion opportunities that arise.”
“The fact that we have been able to raise this money in what remain financially straitened times, is a testimony to our shareholders’ on-going confidence in the company and the management team’s strategy. We look forward to continuing to grow the business with them.”
Bill Weil, Chief Investment Officer of the Ludgate Environmental Fund said: “Ludgate Environmental Fund continues to support the impressive growth of ECO Plastics. The business meets key investment criteria for Ludgate: a proven technology with defensible, differentiable intellectual property, operating in a significant market with substantial growth potential and led by a management team that combines technical expertise with a track record of delivery.”