Steel recovery fund creates jobs in Lanarkshire

4 February 2016

Insurance reinstatement contractor Prater Contracts has moved into a new purpose built office and increased its headcount after securing a six-figure funding package.

UK Steel Enterprise (UKSE), a Tata Steel subsidiary set up to assist growing companies in traditional steel areas, has backed the Lanarkshire business with an Enterprise Finance Guarantee (EFG) loan.

Prater Contracts was set up in 1997 by husband and wife team Stephen and June Prater and is an approved contractor for major insurance companies offering building services for insurance claims.

The firm is currently heavily involved in the refurbishments of homes damaged by the recent flooding in parts of Scotland and Cumbria.

The funding has helped purchase a disused bank in Cleland which has been renovated into a custom-built, two storey office, complete with meeting rooms, a staff kitchen and parking facilities.

Since the move, the Lanarkshire business has been able to take on another four members of staff and an adult apprentice joiner who receives on-site training from Prater’s team and attends college part time.

June Prater, director of Prater Contracts, said: “The funding from UKSE has helped us a great deal. We had outgrown our previous office in Wishaw and needed more space to improve the running of day-to-day tasks.

“We are now in a great position to keep building on the reputation we’ve earned as a highly skilled workforce delivering quality work, on time and on budget.

“The UKSE loan application process was very straightforward; Anne Clyde was great, full of advice regarding our business strategy and well connected to an abundance of people.”

Anne Clyde, regional manager for UKSE, added: “Prater Contracts is a fantastic example of a successful Lanarkshire company with potential for growth.

“UKSE’s purpose is to help create jobs in areas affected by changes in the steel industry and Prater has already taken on five members of staff with the prospective to hire more.

“This is a strong and capable team, with high customer retention. Their reputation is flawless and I have no doubt the company will continue to bring in new and returning business for a successful 2016.”