Newcastle based Bastion Security Products – a government and MoD-approved supplier of industry-leading physical security systems – has secured a £500,000 investment from the North East Growth Capital Fund Supported by the European Regional Development Fund to support rapid business growth and the creation of up to 20 new jobs.

Bastion, which has been providing protection from the ever-evolving threats of the day across three decades, recently won a major defence contract for its highest level system.

The defence contract, which is classified, has the potential to run until 2024.

Bastion worked with regional fund management firm NEL Fund Managers to secure the investment, which will be used to fund significant R&D projects, both to improve existing products and develop new ones.

The company is also planning a major export drive into security-friendly new markets, and over the next five years, aims to become the UK benchmark supplier of highest-level multi-threat modular systems.

With a background in supplying commercial robbery protection for banks and cash-handling environments and protective containment within the majority of UK courts handling terrorist and organised crime trials, in 2010 Bastion Security Products moved into the development of a series of modular high security room building and partitioning systems, for multi sector applications.

Uses for the modular systems range from securing radioactive source materials in medical environments to government computer data halls; from ultra-secure meeting rooms to the containment of weapons and explosives.

Commenting on the investment, managing director Tom Deevy, who has a long association with the intelligence and security sectors, said: “The Bastion name has a long and distinguished reputation in the UK since the 1980’s, based upon excellent products which resolve the threats of the day. Our industry-leading product warranties and customer service levels are also hugely appreciated.

“Terrorist and organised crime threats are constantly changing and therefore the protective responses need to adapt too.

“The NEL investment will ensure our rapid growth is properly funded and 20 new positions created. We’re grateful for NEL’s faith in us and the eminently professional way the investment has progressed.”

David Thomas, investment director at NEL Fund Managers, adds: “Bastion sets the benchmark for its industry, a fact backed up by the quality of the contracts it is winning, and we’re extremely pleased to be investing in the firm’s scale-up and job creation plans.”

The North East Growth Capital Fund has been designed to create around 790 jobs in more than 70 regional firms over the life of the programme and offers unsecured investments of up to £500,000 to established businesses looking to realise their growth potential.

NEL Fund Managers is actively looking for potential investees from Tyne & Wear, Durham and Northumberland to put their investment ideas forward.

The overarching £120m North East Fund will provide financial support for more than 600 businesses, creating around 3,500 jobs and delivering a legacy of up to £80m for further investment into the region.