January 2019


Lab42 heading for further expansion after small capital grant

"It all leaves us well-placed for further growth and the grant was invaluable to us achieving this."

A game development studio in Leamington has grown its workforce from 11 to 23 in a year and is targeting further expansion following "invaluable" support from Warwickshire County Council.

Lab42 aims to employ 30 people by the end of 2019 after settling into bigger and better-equipped premises in William Street.

Last year, like many growing small businesses, they faced the challenges of an urgent need for expansion alongside all the financial commitment that requires.

They needed to grow, but were keen to stay within the heart of the district's vibrant gaming sector. A small capital grant, accompanied by ongoing expert business advice, from the county council has left them perfectly-placed to keep on expanding.

"We were extremely lucky to find the Malthouse but there was plenty of renovation work for us to do on the property to fit our needs," said Lab42 managing director Ed Blincoe. "The council funding enabled us to do work above and beyond what we had planned.

"We operate in a very competitive sector and need to attract the best people which means it's vitally important to have a great office environment for existing staff, our clients and potential new recruits to the business. It's fantastic that we have been able to put in spacious meeting-rooms, really nice reception and kitchen areas alongside an excellently-equipped open-plan office.

"It all leaves us well-placed for further growth and the grant was invaluable to us achieving this."

Alongside the funding, Lab42 had help from Jagdish Soor, business support advisor for the council.

“Jag helped us a lot throughout the application process which was fantastic because we could devote the time that he saved us to the business. He gave us some really good ideas about how we can scale up."

The growth of Lab42 adds another dimension to the incredible story of the rise of Leamington "Silicon" Spa as an internationally-renowned gaming cluster. But while there is an inevitable degree of competition within the region, alongside it is a spirit of collaboration to the benefit of all.

"We wouldn't be anywhere else," said Ed, formerly Director of Digital Publishing at Codemasters. "When we were initially looking at new premises, we considered moving out of the town centre but quickly realised this is the best place to be for our staff and clients.

"There is a real sense of collaboration in the sector along with the natural sense of competition. In our experience, studios work together, outsource projects locally and help each other. This is why Leamington has become such a brilliant hub for the sector - there is a huge amount of skill and expertise here but also fantastic cooperation. We sometimes compete for staff, however we are all focused on growing the local pool of talent and want each other to thrive."

Warwickshire County Council leader Cllr Izzi Seccombe said:"I recently had the pleasure of visiting Lab42 and it was wonderful to see how their expansion into bigger premises and continued growth has been helped by the small capital grant from the county council.

"Our support has allowed them the scope to get on with what they are good at, which is business. I am delighted that they are set to go from strength to strength as part of Warwickshire's buoyant digital sector."

 * The advice for the company was delivered as part of the Coventry and Warwickshire Business Support Programme, which is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund and Warwickshire County Council. 

  • To find out more about the range of support available to grow your business, please contact the Growth Hub on 0300 060 3747.


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