Cashmere company looking at new markets
James Johnston and Co hopes to expand into new markets after securing a £5 million funding deal with Lloyds Banking Group.
The Elgin cashmere firm is planning on doing more in Asia and the Middle East.
New machinery, including a Dornier Rapid loom capable of knitting whole garments rather than just panels which need stitched together, has been bought and the company is also looking at getting some graduate trainees into the textiles industry.
James Dracup, managing director, said: "As a company we supply a lot of high fashion labels and quality is always at the forefront of our business.
"We have invested in a number of new looms to increase capacity and flexibility. We look at investments to increase quality and improve service, if we also make efficiency savings as a result that is good but it isn't a priority.
"Much of our work is seasonal, and although export markets are levelling it out, we still need to make sure we have funding in place to cover seasonal peaks and troughs."
Graham Fiddes, relationship director at Lloyds Bank Corporate Markets in Aberdeen, said: "Our funding will allow the company to build up stocks for a new season of designs, attract new staff and continue the successful growth path which James Dracup has put the company on."
James Johnston and Co has around 450 staff in Elgin, 250 in Hawick plus sales offices in London, Dusseldorf, Tokyo and the United States.