Business enterprise LEDCOM, established in 1985, is committed to making a difference in Larne, Ballyclare and surrounding areas through economic and community development – an ethos echoed at leading mineral processor Kilwaughter Minerals.
Since 2017, the two organisations have enjoyed a successful relationship, and during that time Kilwaughter Minerals has provided a six-figure sum to support LEDCOM’s economic development work.
This substantial further injection of cash will help facilitate LEDCOM’s strategic vision of generating long-term social and economic impact in the Mid and East Antrim borough, as well as the Ballyclare area within Antrim and Newtownabbey.
Sharing his delight at the continuing relationship, Simon McDowell, Director at Kilwaughter Minerals said: “At Kilwaughter we want to connect with our local communities and champion economic growth where we can, as well as support the wider supply chain, and that is synonymous with LEDCOM’s purpose.
“Over the past five years, it’s been fantastic to see the valuable advice and support given to numerous micro businesses, SMEs and entrepreneurs across the region, helping them in many areas close to our own journey with product development, business process, and innovation.
“It is a pleasure to continue our partnership and we look forward to seeing how many more start-ups and small businesses can be boosted in the next three years.”
Speaking of the current impact LEDCOM has within the region and its ambitions of supporting 500 businesses, creating 750 jobs, and helping 1500 people into employment, training, or further education by the end of 2022, Chairman Dr Norman Apsley OBE, said: “LEDCOM’s long-standing record of economic development in Northern Ireland is second to none.
“We have continually adapted to changing circumstances, none more so than in the past 22 months, and we have consistently been at the forefront of enterprise, innovation, and business support.
“Without the incredible support we receive from partners such as Kilwaughter Minerals much of that would not be possible and we are thrilled to drive forward in pursuit of our targets with them onboard for the next three years. They really do make a difference.”
In 2020/2021 alone, LEDCOM helped over 135 start-up companies, and more than 88 SMEs, to devise Covid-19 and Brexit response action plans and recirculated a significant £276,745 into Northern Ireland’s social economy.