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IT company secures a £1.8m deal to track Coca-Cola chillers

A LANARKSHIRE tracking ­technology firm has won a €2.3 million (£1.8m) contract from Coca-Cola Enterprises after securing expansion funding from UK Steel Enterprises.

Traceall Global will supply internet-based systems that are designed to help the soft drinks giant keep track of thousands of chillers across Europe.

The three-year deal is a significant coup for Bellshill-based Traceall, which numbers a range of household names among its client list.

Jamie Oliver's catering business uses systems supplied by Traceall to monitor the origins of the goods it buys from suppliers.

Mr Steele said Traceall Global is on track to record turnover of £1.2m in 2014.

The success provides a vindication for the decision by founders Alan Steele and Jim Comerford to develop the Traceall Global business, which combines hardware sourced from China with software developed in Scotland.

An experienced businessman Mr Steele learned tough lessons in the textiles trade. He owned the Caledonian CMT knitwear business that went bust in 1998.

Mr Comerford used to work at the Compaq computer business and is Traceall's chief technology officer.

Mr Steele believes Traceall will be able to sustain the rapid growth it has achieved. Demand for tracking technology is growing around the world in response to changes in regulation and moves by organisations to keep a closer eye on the goods they use and produce. He noted Traceall's systems can be used to monitor where fish are caught, whether the catches comply with quotas, and the temperature they are kept at.

The systems can take information gathered using bar code systems for automatic uploading to the internet.

Mr Steele said the two founders have been joined by six new employees this year, including two programmers and three information technology apprentices.

Traceall Global expects to recruit six more employees over the next 12 months.

The expansion has been part funded with £50,000 loan finance from UK Steel Enterprises, which said Traceall Global has huge potential.

West of Scotland Loan Fund provided £50,000.

Mr Steele said: "This is a really exciting time for our business and we are looking forward to seeing where this investment takes us."

He added: "It is extremely encouraging to have UKSE's support and the financial backing has given us a platform to promote our business and to put ourselves in front of key industry contacts."

UK Steel Enterprise was originally established in 1975 by the then British Steel Corporation and is a subsidiary of Tata Steel.

It aims to promote the regeneration and development of areas in the UK which have been affected by changes in the steel industry, such as Lanarkshire.

In May the organisation said it had created 75,000 jobs in steel areas of the UK, including more than 17,000 in Scotland.

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