Economic Resilience Fund provides “crucial” support to Wrexham-based manufacturer

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The Welsh government's bespoke Economic Resilience Fund (ERF) provides critical support to protect jobs at a key employer in Wrexham, business, and North Wales Minister, Ken Skates, has announced this.

Gresford-based F Bender Limited received £ 149,000 from the fund to protect its 150 employees from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

The EFF, which is part of the Welsh government's £ 1.7 billion business support package, provides substantial financial support to thousands of businesses across Wales and complements the UK government's assistance.

To date, more than 12,500 companies have received financial support worth over £ 280m.

F Bender Limited, manufacturer of paper cups for the hospitality industry and other articles, used the funds for an important cash flow injection.

The company, which works with well-known high street and coffee brands, estimates that it invests around £ 3m annually in the local supply chain.

The company is involved in a number of initiatives to improve the environmental impact of products, including the commercial development of compostable and recyclable paper cups. It also works with and supports Keep Wales Tidy.

Andy Cunliffe, General Manager of F Bender Limited, said: “Support from the Welsh government and the Economic Resilience Fund has been critical to our efforts to survive the effects of Covid-19.

“With much of our business on the main street, our sales collapsed in the early months of the pandemic. The grant aid provided much-needed cash that was used to support suppliers' payments and wages.

"With the return of our markets, we firmly believe that Welsh government funding has played an important role in protecting our employees in Wrexham."

Minister for the Economy, Transport and North Wales, Ken Skates, said: “We have worked hard in Wales to reuse funding after the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, wherever possible, so that those who need it most quickly get financial help.

“Our support package goes beyond what is available elsewhere in the UK and I am proud that the Economic Resilience Fund helps thousands of companies deal with immediate problems that are critical to their survival and jobs protect.

“F Bender Limited in Wrexham is proof that our efforts to support a variety of companies have been successful, and I am delighted that we have been able to provide the company with this critical funding.

"It is an important employer in the region and our support will be crucial to keep it that way even after the pandemic."

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