Cumbria Crystal

From Cumbria to Casino Royale. How debt finance helped this manufacturer supply James Bond’s whisky glasses

A business loan of £120,000 enabled Cumbria Crystal to modernise its manufacturing equipment, paving the way for growth

Chris blade
Chris Blade, Managing Director at Cumbria Crystal

Cumbria Crystal business fact-file

BusinessCumbria Crystal
RegionNorth West
Type of fundingBusiness Loan

Key Takeaways

The Challenge

We needed finance to replace equipment which was outdated and uneconomical to run. That new equipment would enable us to grow and manufacture higher-quality products.

The Finance

We secured £120,000.

The Outcome

The finance enabled us to buy two new modern furnaces and move the business forward.

Cumbria Crystal's journey to finance

  • Founded in 1976, Cumbria Crystal is an established business based in Ulverston.
  • It’s the last remaining lead crystal manufacturer in the UK, creating handmade tableware that’s featured in ITV drama series Downton Abbey and the James Bond film Casino Royale.
  • Needing to modernise its equipment, Cumbria Crystal was introduced to an EFG accredited lender (Enterprise Answers) via its local enterprise agency. The lender worked with the business on its application.
  • Cumbria Crystal received £120,000 via the Enterprise Finance Guarantee (EFG) scheme.

“Receiving the finance was a real game-changer in that the business could move forward with its ambitious growth plans as well as retain and upskill the current workforce.”

Quote logo Chris Blade Managing Director at Cumbria Crystal

Cumbria Crystal's top tips

  • 1

    Don’t be afraid to reach out to more than one lender to find finance. We received finance through the EFG scheme despite a lack of sufficient security to meet the lender’s normal security requirements.

  • 2

    Talk to your local enterprise agency. They can help identify potential options for you and your business. We had no idea the scheme existed until our local enterprise agency explained it to us.

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The best bit about debt finance

  • Without it, we wouldn’t have been able to grow the business and achieve the level of success we’ve had in recent years.