Northeast deals of the week: main investments, contracts and acquisitions


Law office Womble Bond Dickinson (WBD) received £4 million in funding from HSBC UK to support its move to Newcastle city center to take up space in an iconic new office block.

The company, the largest law firm in the region, has been based in Quai for more than 20 years, with its 420 employees currently spread over two offices. Later this year, however, the company brings them together under one roof in the new Spark building at Newcastle Helix.

Newcastle Helix represents a partnership between Newcastle City Council, Legal & General and Newcastle University, bringing together industry leaders, businesses and top researchers to form a world-class innovation hub.

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Nick Houghton CEO of JMG Group

Insurance broker and risk management company based in Newcastle The Sphere group was acquired by a Leeds rival.

Established in 2009, The Sphere Group was a member of the Gauntlet Group network before being acquired by JM Glendinning Group, headquartered in Leeds.

The company will continue to operate as The Sphere Group and retain its team of seven insurance professionals, including Managing Director Alan Oliver.

He will move to the premises of JM Glendinning Insurance Brokers North East, at Gosforth Business Park, which has been part of the JMG Group since 2013, joining the 23 JM Glendinning staff who work primarily with SME clients at the Newcastle office.

Church Point Holiday Park, Newbiggin by the Sea, part of Parkdean Resorts
Church Point Holiday Park, Newbiggin by the Sea, part of Parkdean Resorts

Holiday park operator Parkdean Resorts has announced plans to invest £140m in its UK parks in its biggest ever investment scheme.

The Newcastle-based company, which has 66 parks across the UK, is investing in new accommodation, new and improved activities and facilities, and is installing Wi-Fi throughout the park to further enhance the experience of visitors. customers in the continued boom in stays.

The company, which is headquartered in Gosforth, said its advance bookings were at record levels, prompting a recruitment campaign for 7,000 seasonal jobs, as well as a number of jobs full-time, in the areas of sales, catering and housekeeping. to add to the 2,000 jobs created last year.

Left to right: Lisa Eaton and Maddy Houghton of Fabric Academy with Jonathan Armitage of NEL Fund Managers.
Left to right: Lisa Eaton and Maddy Houghton of Fabric Academy with Jonathan Armitage of NEL Fund Managers.

Newcastle Marketing Training Body fabric academy aims to expand its global reach with a five-digit investment.

Fabric Academy creates and delivers webinars and courses for marketers at all stages of their career to help build the skills needed to develop successful marketing campaigns.

Established at the start of the pandemic, the company has seen over 600 people take its courses over the past 15 months, with candidates signing up from across the UK and Europe, and as far afield as the United States. United, the Philippines, Australia and New Zealand.

The Fabric Academy has worked with regional fund management company NEL Fund Managers to bring an investment of £45,000 to the North East Small Loans Fund, supported by the European Regional Development Fund. It will use the investments to improve its website and digital marketing activities, as well as recruit qualified staff to help it grow. Two new jobs are expected to be created in the coming months, with more to follow as the business expands.

A high-tech maker of thinner-than-a-hair flexible electrical circuits is launching a £68million ($90million) factory in County Durham.

A CGI showing what PragmatIC Park will look like.
A CGI showing what PragmatIC Park will look like.

PragmatIC Semiconductor – which already operates a production line near NETPark – secured £68m in Series C funding, including £3.8m ($5m) from Swiss packaging company Amcor and will launch the Northeast Manufacturing Plant which is expected to double its workforce, creating 125 highly skilled jobs by the end of the year.

Work is currently underway to build the factory and commission the FlexLogIC manufacturing line which is expected to increase production to billions of circuits by 2023.

The investment is PragmatIC’s largest to date and the new site – called PragmatIC Park – will provide space for at least four additional production lines to support continued growth in demand for its products.

John Johnston, Managing Director of Bernicia
John Johnston, Managing Director of Bernicia

Northeast Housing Association Bernicie will invest £210million in homes, estates and communities over the next four years as part of ambitious plans to support its tenants.

The investment will focus on building at least 600 new homes in the area, carrying out major works to improve existing properties and neighborhoods and helping people find work.

Tenants’ views have helped shape Bernicia’s new corporate strategy, which outlines how it will deliver its services at a time of severe financial pressures on households.


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