New Business mentoring

Crimson Bear, the Craven based company that is rapidly-expanding and supplies designer radiators and electrical heating products, is on track to turnover £2m thanks in part to the support that it received from ERDF funded business programme, AD:VENTURE.

Securing a total of £6,754 in match-funded support, Crimson Bear used the cash to set the foundations for the future with investment made towards the purchase of equipment for the office such as desktop PC’s, furniture, IT kit, desks and storage.

Thanks to this initial contribution from AD:VENTURE, the Directors of Crimson Bear, Paul Johnson and Andrew Smith, have grown the business from being a start-up to the success it is today.

Endorsed by Dragon’s Den star, Theo Paphitis, the central heating business now counts B&Q,, Frontline Bathrooms, Buy It Direct Group, Better Bathrooms and Yesss Electrical as its customers. Furthermore, the team also have cause for celebration after being named Micro Business of the Year at the 2018 Keighley and Airedale Business Awards.

Business funding

Paul Johnson, comments: “When we launched the business we always intended to grow but by accessing the AD:VENTURE programme we were able to move our plans forward and put them into practice far sooner. Thanks to the grant and the practical support we were able to benefit from, we are now on track to turnover £2m, which is excellent news.

“We have also created jobs with the appointment of an Online Trading Manager and a Stock Warehouse Controller. In addition, we have invested in two local apprentices who will complete their studies this year and be offered full-time positions with the business.”

Business Advisor for AD:VENTURE, Ian Rhodes, comments: “Crimson Bear had a really strong business plan and a clear vision for the future. Seeing the growth potential of the company made them an excellent applicant to the AD:VENTURE programme. As well as offering match-funded business grant support, we could also provide practical advice that will set them in good stead for years to come.”

Councillor Simon Myers, Lead Member for Enterprising Craven at Craven District Council, adds: “This is a further positive story for us to share with others that may be considering starting up a business. Not only has Crimson Bear become an award-winning example of entrepreneurship, but their continued success and future plans will have a direct economic impact in Craven.

“Knowing that they have already created jobs and have plans for further expansion is really encouraging. It’s great to see how the company has gone from being a home-based start-up to the success it is today. This is also a further example of how programmes like AD:VENTURE, which are here to support young and start-up businesses, are doing just that.”

Beginning the business from a dining room table, just 18 months later the company secured B&Q as a customer. Expanding rapidly, the team quickly realised that they would require premises to work from and also space to store stock.

Approaching local freight company, Joda Freight in Cross Hills, the business rented space in a warehouse and had a Portakabin based next to the offices but due to its planned expansion, Crimson Bear now has its own dedicated space and continues to put in place a low cost and scale-able model.

Future success is planned with the business now gaining the recognition it deserves as it continues to provide designer radiators and electrical heating products from Accuro Korle, Terma, Carisa and several other manufacturers.

Find out more about the AD:VENTURE programme and the events, support and initiatives that it delivers through the Leeds City Region.