Amherst packaging manufacturer gets $2m loan from N.S.

Saturday, Nov 14, 2015

A Cumberland County employer has received a $2-million loan from the Nova Scotia Strategic Opportunities Fund.

EPC Industries Ltd. of Amherst, also known as Polycello, manufactures flexible packaging and has been ranked as one of Canada’s best employers.

Finance Minister Randy Delorey said Friday the loan is short-term and repayable. He denied the loan is a bailout.

“This is funding to help with cash flow. I can tell you that,” Delorey said. “This company has operated in Amherst for quite some time and they’re working on a project right now.”

In an email, a department spokeswoman said the key purpose of the loan “is to assist the company’s effort to overcome issues with its installation of a new business management system. The loan allowed the company to leverage private-sector support as it works through issues with a capital upgrade.”

Earlier this week, The Chronicle Herald was told by former employees of the company that 20 positions had been eliminated recently and more were expected.

The minister referred further questions to EPC Industries.

Attempts to reach the company for comment were unsuccessful Friday.

Delorey said the company has also leveraged a bank loan, an indication, he suggested, that all is well with Polycello.

“They have a long history in this province and a strong business model,” he said.

The strategic opportunities fund is a provincial corporation that invests in economic initiatives in this province.

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