ACE Has Star Quality

Posted: 11 November 2010, in Press Release

Recycling firm ACE continue to set the pace for social enterprises in Scotland with 75 new clients taken on over the last year.

Chairman Rt Hon George Reid shared the good news at the company’s annual meeting last week.

Despite difficulties in the economy, ACE’s annual turnover also saw a 4% increase, to more than £1.5 million.

Mr Reid said: “It’s been a good year and it’s a credit to the staff at ACE that we’re continuing to thrive. Of course, we’ve faced a few difficulties over the year, not least of which the fire early this year, but we’ve had some tremendous successes.”

Antonia Swinson, Chief Executive of the Scottish Social Enterprise Coalition, said: “Social enterprises such as ACE are changing the way we do businesses, delivering real worth in communities across the countries.  This is an excellent achievement for ACE and the firm’s impressive work is clearly having a positive impact on the lives of individuals at a local level.”

Among the highlights for the group were:

  • providing 252 furniture packs for homeless people being re-housed.
  • ACE contributed over £5000 in small grants to local groups
  • employing an average of 45 full time staff, plus a number on temporary contracts : a major contribution to the employment situation in Clackmannanshire, particularly among those who would have difficulty in finding a job elsewhere. 
  • taking on 14 Future Jobs Fund trainees, 3 of whom have secured full time jobs.  ACE also had two supported employment positions for trainees through Clackmannan and Falkirk Councils.
  • achieving ISO accreditation at its first attempt
  • maintaining contracts with four local authorities, and delivered services in 10 local authority areas.
  • The addition of books to our Kerbside collection materials

Malcolm McArdle, Managing Director at ACE, said: “We’ve diverted 14,500 tonnes of material from landfill. That’s a big figure to visualise, but it’s the equivalent of 14,500 VW Beetles. So as businesses go, we’re certainly doing our bit for the environment!

“We’re also significant employers, and we recruit in areas in which people traditionally have difficulty in obtaining, and holding, a job.”  

Despite the positive picture, the company lost one kerbside contract this year to a commercial contractor, even though the ACE bid was significantly lower. 

Mr Reid continued: “We have to accept that there will be much less money to go round but we’re hoping local councils and the Government recognise the total benefits and added value provided by social enterprise companies like ACE.

“We have to keep hammering the fundamental message that ACE does not exist to pay dividends to shareholders.  ACE exists for the benefit of the community.”



Malcolm McArdle                   01259 215090

Note to editor:

ACE currently employs 44 full time staff and recycled over 20,000 tonnes of materials last year. It has over 500 business clients, works in 6 local authority areas and has clients across the Central belt, including local authorities, and other large public and private sector clients based in Glasgow and Edinburgh.  ACE won the Best Scottish Social Enterprise title in 2009/10 and have just been nominated top Social Firm in the 2010 SUSE Business Awards for the Forth Valley region.