Leading online marketplace,Applegate, has been awarded a major grant from the North Devon+ Unlocking Business Investment fund, which has created twenty-six new jobs at the firm.

Businesses across Devon, Plymouth, Torbay and Somerset have had the opportunity to apply for grants, with the £5 million programme being delivered as a partnership between North Devon+ and Plymouth University, supported by the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership.

The success of Applegate PRO, an innovative online buying platform for businesses, played a major part in the successful bid for the grant, which will now fund further development of the system to cope with high transaction volumes. Applegate PRO went live at the start of this year, and has already attracted big name users including SpaceX, Airbus, BAE Systems, the Cabinet Office and the MoD.

Stuart Brocklehurst, Chief Executive of Applegate, commented: “We’re thrilled at the expansion this grant enables, North Devon+ have done a brilliant job in bringing this funding to the area. We’re confident we have a world-beating system in Applegate PRO and look forward to scaling it further and to recruiting more talented people to support it.”

Martin Brown of North Devon+ added: “Applegate is a key digital business in North Devon. The panel were impressed by the breadth of activity Applegate is delivering in training, marketing, research and development and the number of high quality incremental jobs the project brings to the region.”

As a result of the successful bid, Applegate has announced five new Graduate Apprenticeships which will be delivered in partnership with Petroc and Plymouth University. Conservative MP for North Devon, Peter Heaton-Jones, welcomed the news: “I would like personally to congratulate Applegate on the successful grant application and North Devon+ on delivering this investment. I’m especially pleased with the creation of the new apprenticeship programme, which will provide a great opportunity for young people to earn and gain valuable work experience whilst studying for a degree.”

Oliver Colvile, Conservative MP for Plymouth, also offered his congratulations: “It is fantastic news that Applegate Marketplace are opening a Plymouth office creating 26 new jobs. Plymouth is in great need of more employment opportunities.”

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