A new Costa Coffee branch funded by Yorkshire Bank is transforming the fortunes of a Greater Nottingham town.
The new store opened last month in a blaze of publicity after it attracted more than 1,300 applicants for just six jobs. Since then, the coffee shop has been doing brisk business, with other local retailers reporting increased trade.
Costa is the UK’s biggest and fastest growing coffee chain. It is now hoped the arrival of the High Street business will boost footfall in Hucknall and attract other big brands to the town.
The Hucknall store is operated by franchisee, the Coffee Lovers Group. The business, established by local entrepreneur Sham Ramparia, received a five figure funding package from Yorkshire Bank to fit out the new branch. The deal was delivered by Graham Harper from the Bank’s Nottingham and Derby Business and Private Banking Centre.
Sham, a new customer to Yorkshire Bank, opened his first Costa in Lutterworth, Leicestershire in May 2011. He now operates six franchises and employs about 60 staff. With further support from Yorkshire Bank, he plans to open five more Costa stores by the end of 2015, creating dozens of new jobs.
Sham said: “Even since I opened my first branch, I’ve been amazed by the positive impact Costa has on town centres. In Lutterworth, there were 15 empty units when we opened. Now there is only one.
“Hopefully, our new branch in Hucknall will have the same effect. I’ve already heard that some High Street brands are interested in the empty unit next to us, and the feedback from existing retailers is that they’ve been busier since we opened in February.
“As a business, we’re also enjoying a new lease of life thanks to Yorkshire Bank. Since switching from our previous banking partner, we’ve been delighted by Yorkshire Bank’s expertise in the coffee retail sector, and its support for growing businesses.
“We look forward to a long and successful relationship with Yorkshire Bank.”
Carl Dickinson, head of Yorkshire Bank’s Nottingham and Derby Business and Private Banking Centre, said: “Coffee Lovers is an ambitious business that has achieved impressive growth in a short space of time. Sham is also doing a great job of creating employment opportunities for local people in locations where unemployment has been high.
“It is extremely rewarding to know that through our funding, there will be a real and positive impact for the local community, as well as for the local economy through the creation of new jobs and improved footfall.”