Staffordshire chocolatier heading for sweet success following funding

Family-run chocolatier Daniel’s Delights is set to expand its premises thanks to a six-figure investment from Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking.

The funding, which forms part of Lloyds Bank’s commitment to lend £1.3bn to businesses in the North West during 2019, will support the firm’s plans to achieve sales of £5m within the next four years.

The company has doubled its turnover to almost £2m in the past two years by developing its product range – which now includes a Colombian chocolate range in a wide variety of flavours – and securing a string of supply deals with large retailers.

Its partnerships include several supermarkets as well as Mr Simms Olde Sweet Shoppe, which has almost 100 outlets across the UK.

Started by Ken and Jen Harrison at their kitchen table 12 years ago and named for their son, Daniel’s Delights now employs 22 staff at the former Royal Doulton works in Fenton, Stoke-on-Trent.

The £440,000 in funding from Lloyds Bank will allow the business to buy its existing four-storey premises, along with the property next door to allow space for its expanding team.

Ken Harrison, chief executive officer at Daniel’s Delights, said: “At the core of our business is a passion for creating luxurious but affordable chocolate that is a bit different from the offerings of the biggest players in the market.

“That was what we set out to do when we started making our first products in our home, and it remains our ethos now we have a modern and increasingly large production facility.

“We’re taking a very strategic approach to achieving our aims for the years ahead, and that means being able to invest in the systems, infrastructure and processes that will support that growth.

“The team at Lloyds Bank understands that entrepreneurial thinking and has been by our side offering us the support we needed throughout this ambitious expansion period.”

Neil Smith, relationship manager at Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking, said: “Daniel’s Delights is a fantastic success story, growing in just 12 years from a husband-and-wife operation to a business that employs a growing team and contributes significantly to the local economy.

“We’re proud to be playing a part in the company’s ongoing expansion and supporting Ken and Jen in their ambitions to maintain the rapid growth they’ve achieved so far.

“Providing tailored funding and support to businesses like Daniel’s Delights is just one of the ways we’re helping Britain prosper.”