Acquisition deal could boost jobs in tough times

A growing green business has defied the gloom by taking over a Suffolk firm and aiming to create more jobs.

On the day the CBI forecasted a 3.3 per cent dip in the UK economy and a rise in unemployment to nearly 2.9 million by the end of the year, Kent-based Countrystyle Group announced its purchase of Bioganix Composting for an undisclosed sum.

The deal boosts the waste management, composting and recycling company’s 190-strong workforce by six and could lead to more jobs in Kent and Parham, Suffolk. Six staff will switch to Countrystyle but continue to be based in Parham.

Bioganix had faced financial problems and Countrystyle bought it from the administrators.

Director Niall Corman-Walshe said: "We are delighted with the acquisition. It fits perfectly with the company’s plans for growth, in terms of both geographical location and business type.

"We can see a huge potential in the management of organic waste and we plan to develop the Parham site to enhance its potential to service the East Anglia region."

The Parham plant was opened in 2005 after Bioganix won a 10-year contract to process source-separated kitchen waste from a number of local authorities. This contract will now be handled by Countrystyle in Parham.

The acquisition is part of Countrystyle’s development plan to become one of the leading privately owned waste management companies in the south east. It already operates a waste separation plant in Strood and a composting facility at Ridham Docks, near Sittingbourne.

The group, founded in 1985 and with annual sales of £20 million, includes three companies - Countrystyle, FGS Agri and FGS Plant. FGS Agri specialises in agricultural and utility contracting, farm and estate management. FGS Plant provides self drive and manned plant hire, mainly to the construction and civil engineering industries.

Vertex Law, based in Kings Hill, West Malling, and Ashford-based WK Finn Kelcey, advised Countrystyle.

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