A Derby firm supplying emergency communication systems to disabled people has created 20 new full time jobs with support from the Derby Enterprise Growth Fund (DEGF). Alerter Group plc was successful in a bid to receive both grant and loan funding from the DEGF to make essential alterations to their building and IT infrastructure to allow for expansion and development.

Established in 2000, the company has grown rapidly to become a market leader in radio-based communication systems, meeting the needs of a customer base in the UK and Ireland. Formerly Deaf Alerter the company started up by providing vibrating alarm systems for people who could not hear traditional sound based fire alarms. Their product portfolio has since expanded to include refuge communication systems, maintenance for assisted listening devices and recently to finding radio based communication solutions for potentially hazardous work based situations. Customers are diverse and include central and local Government, educational establishments, historic houses including Hampton Court Palace and the Ministry of Defence.

Constantly adapting to be at the forefront of new technology, the company needed to improve infrastructure at their base on Burton Road in Derby. With building improvements complete, a vastly improved R&D facility and a new server in place, the company has been able to progress plans to recruit new posts in R&D, engineering, sales, marketing and administration.

Success in the prestigious Derby Telegraph Business Awards followed quickly on the heels of the development project. Alerter Group plc were delighted to be named winners of the Excellence in Science and Technology category as well as being a runner-up Derby Small Business of the Year.

Claire Presland, Commercial Director of Alerter plc, comments: “Accessing the DEGF enabled us to take the next step in our growth plans. Winning the science and technology award was great recognition of that step and helped to build our confidence in what we can achieve to help more people in new ways. Profits made by Alerter plc go back into R&D to fund more life-saving systems, so the faster we grow, the more lives we can save.”

Derby City Council Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Cabinet Member for Regeneration & the Economy, Councillor Martin Rawson, comments: “Our funding scheme is one of the most successful of its type in the country. In this case, it has been able to help a small company expand from 25 employees to around 45. The Council has been delighted to use the Fund to stimulate employment opportunities for local people.”

DEGF is now entering a new phase with the distribution of £12 million of recycled loan funding. Applications are invited from businesses with plans for growth and job creation in Derby and Derbyshire. Further funding is being sought to enable this fantastic scheme to be extended to more businesses in Derbyshire in the near future.

To find out more visit: http://www.derby.gov.uk/degf alternatively, call 01332 641628 or email degf@derby.gov.uk