NPIF funding feeds growth for leading edible crops supplier

Loz O'Connor
Fund Manager

Manchester-headquartered, Cocogreen, has received £500,000 funding from NPIF - FW Capital Debt Finance, managed by FW Capital and part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF).

Cocogreen® is a leading international brand of speciality coir substrates for edible crops. Operating and manufacturing from within the UK, Sri Lanka, India, the Far East, Asia, USA, Spain, Portugal, Australia and Africa the rapidly growing firm produce growbags and  bespoke commercial products for the berry substrates and other speciality crop markets across the globe. They are the first and only growing media producer externally recognised for its Sustainability, Social, Ecological and Environmental Assurance -traceable from beginning to end.

Launched nine years ago and now employing 12 people, the firm has a turnover of £5million, a figure that is expected to rise to around £50million during the next 5 years. The investment from NPIF - FW Capital Debt Finance will support the firm’s ambitious expansion plans and will be utilised to acquire new stock and recruit additional team members.

The company’s advanced substrates use their trade marked Moisture Control Technology which greatly improves the products water holding capacity and air filled porosity. They have gained a strong foothold overseas with commercial growers of blueberries, strawberries, raspberries and blackberries as well as high value tree citrus, avocado, macadamia nuts and high value salad crops grown hydroponically.

With headquarters in Manchester, Cocogreen serves clients via its offices and operations in the UK.

Cocogreen received the prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise presented by Vice-Lord Lieutenant of Greater Manchester, Paul Griffiths DL in recognition of six years of outstanding growth in International Export Trade.

Thomas Ogden, Group Commercial Director at Cocogreen commented: “In order to meet demand and sustain this level of growth, additional funding is essential. This capital injection will help provide the infrastructure through which we can take our business to the next level and press forward with our ambitious growth plans.”

He added: “We have had an incredibly positive experience working with FW Capital who have taken a holistic and long term view of the business and our ideas. It’s been a refreshing and positive partnership and their support is very much valued.”

FW Capital investment executive Loz O’Connor said: “Cocogreen is a really exciting business that is making a huge impact within its specialist sector throughout the world.

“I was really impressed with the management team.  They know their market, have a clear vision for the future growth of the company and are driven and professional businessmen.

“It is great that we have been able to support such a successful export business with a substantial amount of finance which will make a real impact on future growth and FW Capital are looking forward to working with Cocogreen through this next phase of development."

Sue Barnard 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.