East Yorkshire-based Marine Rescue Technologies Ltd (MRT) has received a £750,000 investment from NPIF – FW Capital Debt Finance, managed by FW Capital and part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF).
MRT has manufactured and supplied commercial man overboard safety solutions to some of the world’s largest companies for over 40 years and is widely regarded as the global leader in this field. Over this time, it has become a specialist provider to the aviation, offshore oil and gas, defence, commercial marine and renewable industries worldwide.
MRT was established in its current form in 2001 and is based in Beverley, near Hull, employing 20 staff.
One of the first rescues enabled by an MRT locator beacon was in 1979 when, following a capsizing, an ocean rower was rescued in the mid-Atlantic, 700 miles off New Foundland. After activating his MRT emergency locator beacon, the signal was picked up by Concorde en route to New York and a cargo ship was diverted to rescue him.
The FW Capital funding will be used to recruit three new employees, increase marketing spend and to provide on-going sales support in what is certain to be a very busy year for MRT.
The investment comes as MRT delivers several important projects, providing lucrative growth opportunities in new markets.
The firm has been selected by the European Global Navigation Satellite Systems Agency (GNSS) to lead the development of next generation search and rescue distress beacons and has been awarded a research and development grant of €435,000.
A new personal locator beacon (PLB) that will launch in April 2020, sMRT SHIELD PLB, will be suitable for use in both maritime and land-based applications and for both the commercial and recreational sectors.
FW Capital investment executives Keith Charlton and Anne Blanden managed the deal, which was introduced by Phil Marshall at NatWest and Karl Hodson of BTG Advisory.
Keith Charlton, Senior Investment Executive, at FW Capital, said: “MRT is a highly-profitable business with an established UK manufacturing facility and a global reseller and service network.
“With a skilled and dedicated senior management team, MRT has strong levels of ongoing recurring revenue and clear, well-constructed strategic growth plans to expand the business organically, as well as selling into new markets with new products.
“We are pleased that MRT have chosen FW Capital as their investment partner at this exciting time.”
Ryan Pettit, MRT CEO, said: “The investment from FW Capital comes at a time of great growth for MRT, with many exciting opportunities in development.
“The team at FW Capital really supported our business growth plan. They were able to offer the funding we needed and were incredibly helpful and efficient to work with. We look forward to continuing our partnership with them in the future.”
Operating from the British Business Bank’s Sheffield head office, the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund provides a mix of debt and equity funding (£25,000 to £2m). It works alongside ten Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs), the combined authorities and Growth Hubs, as well as local accountants, fund managers and banks, to support Northern-based SMEs at all stages of their development.
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.