Lanarkshire business figures received a unique insight into the growth achieved by the UK’s leading men’s hirewear supplier at an event hosted by Clydesdale Bank.
The session, held at the premises of ACS Clothing on Wednesday 12 November, included a tour of the company’s 85,000 sq ft facility at Eurocentral in North Lanarkshire, and the opportunity to learn about its state-of-the-art garment handling technology. The event was organised by Clydesdale Bank as part of its third Business Week.
Clydesdale Bank customer ACS Clothing was founded in 1997 by Richard Freedman and his father Joseph to provide men’s Highlandwear hire to the retail sector. The business later expanded into formalwear and launched an IT company, Xedo, to offer a range of software products to the hire and wedding industries.
Customers now include multiples such as Debenhams and Burtons, and a number of independent hire firms. The business employs about 100 staff and stocks three million garments at its Eurocentral base.
Thomas Brock, Head of Clydesdale Bank’s Lanarkshire Business and Private Banking Centre, based in East Kilbride, said: “ACS Clothing has expanded rapidly since it was established 17 years ago to become a market leader supplying some of the biggest high street retailers in the UK.
“We’re delighted that they agreed to share their inspiring experiences and insight into achieving business growth. Their first class IT systems and technology will have given much food for thought.
“We’d like to thank everyone who came to the event and to the team at ACS Clothing for supporting Business Week.”
Clydesdale Bank’s Business Week was held from November 10-14 to help businesses invest, connect and network where it matters most.
Business Week has seen more than 250 customer-focused events staged at the Bank’s UK-wide network of Business and Private Banking Centres, including several across Lanarkshire. Among the events staged locally was a renewable energy technology session, a business lending workshop and a visit to professional imaging laboratory Photolox.
Across the UK, businesses were invited to meet with some of the UK’s leading financial experts to discuss their most pressing commercial issues such as; planning and securing finance for growth, improving profitability and succession planning.
Research* commissioned by Clydesdale Bank as part of Business Week suggested that Scottish small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) are ready to invest nearly £5.3bn into the economy over the next 12 months. According to the research, 82% of Scotland’s 326,000** SMEs are ready to invest, with each small business spending on average 5% of turnover. Key areas such as new equipment, staff training and increased marketing are at the top of their shopping lists.
*Opinium Research carried out an online survey of 802 UK adults aged 18+ from 9th-17th October 2014. Results have been weighted to nationally representative criteria. www.opinium.co.uk
**Department for Business Innovation and Skills SME population figures