A ST IVES company specialising in gas detectors and analysers has received a boost after securing a £3,800 grant from the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Growth Fund.

A ST IVES company specialising in gas detectors and analysers has received a boost after securing a £3,800 grant from the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Growth Fund.

The money will lead to the creation of one new job at Cambridge Sensotec, and safeguard three more, with an anticipated increase in sales of 11 per cent.

The company designs, manufactures and distributes gas analysers and detectors, and has grown in recent years to distribute other companies' detectors and alarms for oxygen, toxic gases and explosives. It received the money after completing plans to introduce an online sales arm to the business, and expand to provide equipment-calibration services.

The grants are awarded to businesses in Cambridgeshire priority sectors, which have undertaken growth projects leading to the creation or safeguarding of jobs. The fund is managed by the Greater Cambridge Partnership (GCP).

Cambridge Sensotec was founded in 2000 and has nine full-time employees. Sales in its products have been growing steadily in recent years, driven by legislation and improved health and safety practices in the workplace.

Managing director Mark Swetnam said: "The award of this grant has allowed us to expand into the field of calibrating gas detectors. This is something we had hoped to do for quite some time as it complements our existing business of manufacturing gas detection equipment.

"However, we could never justify the capital expenditure without the assistance of a grant. We now have a professional calibration facility in our factory and the interest in this new service has been considerable."

Roger Goetze, of the East of England Industrial Development Board and a judge of The Hunts Post Huntingdonshire Business Awards, advised Cambridge Sensotec on its grant application. He said: "This is a fantastic example of how a small business can grow with a little bit of support, diversify from its core business in a small way, but capture more customers by providing a broader service. This is what the CPGF is all about."

Nigel Brown, chairman of GCP, added: "I am pleased to see local companies taking advantage of the facilities and funding that is available.

"All too often we hear that companies struggle because they don't know where to go for help and advice. This type of success isn't just for the business owners, but their employees, suppliers and customers all benefit, as well as the wider community."