£14m in funding ends Hargreaves coal link

Durham-based Hargreaves Services has ended its association with coal mining after £14million funding enabled it to focus completely on services and property development.

Hargreaves was historically focused on coal mining and took the strategic decision to leave the sector, repositioning away from coal, closing its last mine last year and selling its remaining coal stocks. The money from Santander UK means it can now end all coal mining-related revenue activity.

Santander UK is supporting Hargreaves’ successful transition out of coal mining to focus on its services and property development operations. The bank has provided the £14m finance package, comprising invoice finance and foreign exchange funding to the group. It has also moved its day-to-day banking to Santander UK.

Hargreaves delivers a wide range of services to the industrial and property sectors globally. Hargreaves Industrial Services’ offering includes outsourced bulk materials handling and mechanical and electrical engineering for key industries such as power, port operations and refineries in the UK and South East Asia.

Additionally, it is a leading provider to the bulk logistics, waste, environmental services and minerals sectors. It has a team dedicated to regenerating former surface mining sites, as well as operating quarries across the UK.

The group’s Blackwell Earthmoving entity is among the UK’s major earthworks contractors, delivering bulk earthmoving services, and it was recently awarded a £120m contract for the High Speed 2 rail engineering project.

Hargreaves also has a portfolio of more than 12,000 acres of land throughout the UK, which its Hargreaves Land operation develops for residential, commercial, retail, energy and agricultural use. Its German-based joint-venture, Hargreaves Raw Materials Services, meanwhile, sources and trades speciality minerals from China, Eastern Europe, South Africa and North America for industrial buyers across Europe and recycles steel waste to produce pig iron for the steel and foundry industries.

Hargreaves was founded in 1994 and now employs a staff of more than 1,700 throughout the world, who deliver projects and services spanning a range of industries.

The group anticipates strong growth in its property development business due to the increasing demand for additional housing in the UK, particularly in urban areas where brownfield sites can be repurposed for housing without damaging greenbelt land. The demand for large scale distribution sites is also very strong and Hargreaves Land has recently announced the sale of a major site near Doncaster to a national retailer.

John Samuel, Group Finance Director, said: “We required a more appropriate and flexible funding facility focused on our services business. Santander UK’s practical, proactive, innovative, and supportive approach has enabled us to secure support for this rapidly.”

Paul Watkin, Relationship Director at Santander UK, said: “Hargreaves’ management team has successfully repositioned the business since it exited its UK coal operations, and there are exciting and significant opportunities ahead.

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