LEIGH BUSINESS DONATES CAKES TO THE HOMELESS AND ENCOURAGES YOUNG PEOPLE TO BETTER THEIR SKILLS
A Leigh-based company is embracing partnership working in order to provide jobs for local people and give back to the community.
Dan Ross and Mick McGowan set up 'Romix Foods' in 2014, following the sale of Dan's previous company, 'Victoria Foods', a company they previously ran from the same premises.
They signed up to Wigan Council's Deal for Business in 2018 after hearing about it at a mentoring course delivered by GC Business Growth Hub.
After identifying an opportunity to work closely with the council, Dan and Mick realised that they could get help with their ambitious growth plan, which would also generate more jobs.
And, by signing up to The Deal for Business, Romix Foods were eligible to apply for the council's Business Booster fund and were awarded a £10,000 loan to buy new machinery, which would help diversify their current offer.
Speaking about the business and their decision to sign up to The Deal, Mick said: "We're happy to say that over the last four years, Romix Foods has evolved and we now employ more than 35 staff members, many of whom are people that were unfortunately made redundant following the relocation of Victoria Foods after it was sold to a Leeds based business.
"It's a great feeling to know we're helping people and have managed to re-employ long-standing, trusted colleagues.
"The Deal for Business was really easy to sign up to and I'd recommend it to other business owners as the whole relationship with the council really works and we benefitted a lot from it.
"Although we did receive some money, the financial support is just one element of their offer and we found that The Deal for Business really can make a small business thrive."
And, as a company that manufactures dry powder ingredients for large bakeries, they regularly have sweet treats left-over from when their product is tried and tested, which they then donate to local homeless charities.
Mick continued: "It's really important to give back and although we don't make sellable baked goods, we do need to test bake our product, resulting in us having products that would only go in the bin, so we wanted to find an alternative option as that would otherwise be a huge waste.
"Thanks to The Deal for Business, we've also expanded our offer from providing dry powder ingredients for large manufacturers, to launching a new product that is now sold direct to consumers in shops like Home Bargains and other supermarkets. We're very excited about this new venture."
Romix Foods is also committed to developing the skills of young people by encouraging their apprentices and graduates to undertake further qualifications, paid for by the company.
Leader of the council, Councillor David Molyneux said: "We love to support local businesses so they can grow and help our economy thrive.
"The Deal for Business allows us to engage with companies that need our help but also gives business owners the opportunity to engage with the community and give something back to local people.
"Romix Foods have done an impeccable job from donating cakes to homeless charities to supporting the borough's young people and I look forward to hearing about what else they may do in the future.
"Dan and Mick have been innovative in their approach, meaning that a sad situation four years ago leading to an empty unit and the loss of jobs has been reversed and something much more sustainable has been created.
I wish them well on their new journey and hope their partnership with the council is long and prosperous."
For more information about The Deal for Business, please visit www.wiganworks.com