Ice cream company secures £1.2m investment to support expansion

By Michelle Perrett

- Last updated on GMT

The new site will double capacity at the creamery
The new site will double capacity at the creamery

Related tags: Business leaders

Leeds-based Northern Bloc, the natural ice cream company, has signed the lease on a new 18,000 sq ft site in the heart of the city after receiving a £1.2m investment from equity investor Gresham House Ventures.

The ice cream business predicts it can produce almost double the volume of all-natural ice cream, supporting its aim to become the UK’s number one plant-based ice cream brand.  

It is moving into the former Bagel Nash production site on North Street in Leeds this month and will convert the existing facilities into a purpose-built ice creamery, which will start production immediately.  

By the end of the summer the company will fully relocate its expanded production facility and office-based sales and marketing team. The site will eventually be home to a factory shop and will host street party-style events. 

Investment

The move has been made possible by investment from Gresham House Ventures of £1.2m.  This is the second round of investment secured, with the first round in January 2021 allowing the business to expand its team and production capacity.  

Co-founder and director at Northern Bloc, Josh Lee, said: “In 2021, Northern Bloc experienced 80% growth in turnover as out-of-home accounts started to come back from the pandemic in a strong position. We also won new out-of-home accounts and our retail business bloomed.

"Our first round of investment enabled us to be able to quickly and effectively fulfil this demand and we’re excited to see what the next year brings, on the back of this second investment. 

Investing in Leeds

“We’re committed to investing in Leeds. It’s Northern Bloc home and we’re so pleased we’ve been able to secure a new site right on our doorstep. We can’t wait to open our doors to the public and introduce more people to the world of Northern Bloc.” 

Whilst the business’ growth is primarily from its plant-based range, the business said it also continues to produce dairy products.  It has recently added a premium, soft serve plant-based ice cream to its out of home range, known as THE WHiP!. 

Giles Whitman, portfolio director at Gresham House Ventures, added: “Gresham House is delighted to be supporting the continued growth of such a pioneering brand. Northern Bloc’s commitment to plant-based and naturally, responsibly sourced ingredients strongly aligns with our focus on sustainability goals and we’re excited to see what possibilities the new premises will bring.” 

  

Related topics: Frozen, Operations

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