By Maximilian Clarke

GRITIT, the first company in the UK to specialise in winter gritting and snow clearance has secured a £700,000 asset finance and working capital facility from Barclays Corporate.

The company, which was named recently 37th in The Times Fast Track 100, with an 83% increase in sales in 2011, has used the new funding to invest in 30 new vehicles and gritting trailers, bringing its fleet up to 150, located in 92 strategic depots across Scotland, the Midlands, North, South West, South East and now Northern Ireland as part of the firm’s recent expansion plans.

The investment follows a number of new contract wins and a growing client portfolio.

“Every year the UK faces tough challenges when dealing with unpredictable winter weather, and by understanding the issues our clients face, we have introduced innovative solutions that help organisations and government departments take the necessary action required to keep their properties operational, safe and accessible, and at the same time avoiding overspend and the negative impact weather conditions can have on other essential services,” said Alastair Kight, GRITIT’s Managing Director.

“To be the first company in our sector to be recognised in the prestigious Sunday Times Virgin Fast Track 100 is an incredible achievement. This reinforces our belief in business in the UK, and supports our plans for the future growth of the company. We have committed to investing over £4m and will look to create in excess of 265 new jobs in the UK and Northern Ireland in the next few years. We could not do this without the continued backing of Barclays and as a small but rapidly growing business we have really benefitted from their support over the last few years”

The business, which was founded in 2004, uses cutting-edge technology to accurately predict the weather and track its 300 operators in the field. So when the temperature drops to zero degrees or snow is forecast, the GRITIT team sets to work gritting and manually clearing snow from thousands of hospitals, universities and major corporates, keeping car parks and premises safe, open and businesses operational even during the worst conditions.

Jonathan Cooley Relationship Director at Barclays Corporate in Basingstoke comments: “GRITIT is a great example of an innovative British business which has prospered during the economic downturn. The company has enjoyed tremendous success over a relatively short period of time and secured jobs at a challenging time for the economy”.

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