Funding helps fire alarm firm step up to next level

Derbyshire’s fastest growing fire alarm and security specialist is on track to increase its turnover by 50% this year after securing a £150,000 loan from UK Steel Enterprise (UKSE) and NPIF – Mercia Debt Finance, which is managed by Mercia Fund Managers and part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund.

The funding will allow Advanced Integrated Security Systems (AISS) to create two new jobs for project managers and compete for projects on the national stage. AISS, which is based in Dronfield, specialises in the design and installation of fire alarm, disabled alarm, smoke ventilation, security, data networks and integrated reception systems for commercial usage.

The company was established in 2017 by Nick Clayton who has over 25 years’ experience in the industry and now employs a team of 12 staff. The funding follows a spike in order numbers experienced over the last 12 months.

Commenting on the deal, Nick said: “Operating on a national level, with the majority of clients currently based in Yorkshire, the North West and London, the investment will undoubtedly be instrumental in the continued growth of the business.

“Having reached the £2 million turnover mark in 2017, we are now on track to surpass £5 million this year and have already exceeded our initial 2019 forecast. The investment has meant that I can focus on a recruitment drive in order to sustain the rapid growth we’ve seen to date.”

UK Steel Enterprise is a subsidiary of Tata Steel and provide equity and loan finance to growing companies. Alan Stanley, Regional Executive at UK Steel Enterprise Ltd, commented: “Nick has done a great job of building AISS up to compete on a national level. We are pleased to have provided investment to the firm and believe that its growth is just the beginning of what can be achieved.”

Pete Sorsby, Investment Manager at Mercia, added: “AISS has seen impressive growth since its launch in 2017 which reflects Nick’s long-standing experience in the industry and the strength of the team he has built. This funding will allow the company to build on its success and to work on larger, landmark projects.”

Shorts Chartered Accountants provided financial advice to the company while Chris Mangle of Custom Business Finance advised on fundraising. Chris Mangle commented: “I’ve been assisting Nick since he had the vision to establish AISS. It’s great to see Nick’s plans and hard work deliver the results we see today. Engaging the right people and the right funding organisations to assist growth has been key.”

Operating from the British Business Bank’s Sheffield head office, the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund provides a mix of debt and equity funding to support Northern-based SMEs at all stages of their development.

Mark Wilcockson at British Business Bank, said: “We are pleased that NPIF has continued to support high-growth businesses in the North, providing vital funding to enable job creation and expansion into new markets. This investment demonstrates how this funding can make a real and measurable difference to businesses across the Northern Powerhouse region, which helps create a more prosperous regional economy.”

The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund project is supported financially by the European Union using funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and the European Investment Bank.