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Business / Funding boost for local knitwear firm

A HOSWICK based knitwear company has secured a £100,000 funding package from the Royal Bank of Scotland to help modernise the business by purchasing new machinery.

Laurence Odie Knitwear became employee-owned last year with company founder Laurence Odie selling 100 per cent of his business to its 14 employees through support from Highland and Islands Enterprise ahead of retirement.

The bank’s investment has now enabled the internationally recognised manufacturer and supplier of quality knitwear to upgrade its range of manufacturing machinery as it continues to attract attention from overseas retailers in Asia and the States.

Improved energy and waste efficiencies are also a benefit of the new equipment which will be used to make the wide range of authentic Shetland products.

Odie said: “We are incredibly proud of our heritage and the whole team prides itself on delivering exceptional products that are unique to Shetland.

“Despite a challenging year, the business is in a strong position as we head into 2021 and we look forward to welcoming new customers, both in Shetland and overseas.

“The support from Royal Bank of Scotland came at a critical time for the growth within the business and the new machinery has enabled us to create our high-quality products more efficiently, as well as being kinder to the planet.”

Senior relationship manager at Royal Bank of Scotland Michelle Anderson said: “We understand the firm’s importance to Shetland, and helping the team accelerate their future plans has been very rewarding.

“It’s an exciting time for the company as they expand their customer base overseas and we look forward to hearing about its continued success.”