Sweet funding deal for Fife chocolate fountain firm

Sephra Europe, the Fife-based supplier of commercial chocolate fountains, has secured £45,000 in fresh funding to tap into new markets.

Sephra Europe's customers include Berwick creperie Maisies

The loan has been delivered by the East of Scotland Investment Fund (ESIF), which is administered by Business Gateway Fife on behalf of Fife Council Economic Development.

Operational since 2008 and based in Kirkcaldy, Sephra also distributes machines for waffles, crepes and popcorn Machines. The firm, led by managing director David Archer, employs nine people.

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Archer said: “The ESIF loan facilitated a buy-out from a business partnership which had come to a natural end. This enabled the business to become leaner.

“It certainly improved our cash flow, giving us working capital to reinvest in product development and expand our distribution markets worldwide, especially into previously untapped markets in Russia and the Middle East. It was the ideal financial solution for the business at that time.”

As well as supplying Pizza Hut with waffle-making equipment and mixes, Sephra is working with supermarket chain Asda to supply self-service popcorn makers.

Councillor Lesley Laird, depute leader of Fife Council and spokesperson for economy and planning, said: “Sephra Europe is an excellent example of a local business achieving major global distribution success through good leadership and innovative product development. Accessing an ESIF loan has enabled David and his team to take the company forward and realise their business goals.”