Hartlepool jobs boost after recycling firm wins £7.5m growth fund

CASH BOOST: Vikki Jackson-Smith, managing director of J&B Recycling
CASH BOOST: Vikki Jackson-Smith, managing director of J&B Recycling

A RECYCLING firm is set for a jobs boost after winning £7.5m from a funding pot created to help growing businesses flourish.

Business Growth Fund (BGF), the independent company established to help Britain’s up and coming firms, has made its first investment in Teesside by pumping £7.5m into J&B Recycling.

The cash has been earmarked to help the firm expand its current operations, and in turn creating new jobs.

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.

It has also won national contracts for large tonnages delivered and processed at its Hartlepool facility in Thomlinson Road.

Customers include local authorities, housing authorities, commercial, industrial and also other waste companies who use J&B’s facilities to recycle their customers’ wastes.

The company is run by female entrepreneur Vikki Jackson-Smith, who established the recycling business in 2000 to diversify from the solid fuel business that her father Alan Jackson had originally established in the 1970’s.

Since then, the business has grown to an annual turnover of £10m and employs 175 people.

She said: “I am delighted J&B has secured a significant investment from BGF to help execute our very exciting growth plans.

“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.”

BGF’s cash 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.

Richard Taylor, investment director at Business Growth Fund, said: “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.

“The creation of jobs will help the areas of Hartlepool and Middlesbrough, and we are looking forward to helping the company to develop further in the coming months.”