From burger van to business empire

A DYSLEXIC man who was told he would only find work emptying bins has established a multi-million-pound business empire.

Alexander Brimelow has overcome his dyslexia to forge a business venture with his childhood friend, Andrew North, which revolves around high-performance cars and horse boxes.

With help from Yorkshire Bank, two companies founded by Mr Brimelow have merged to enable them to grow.

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Alexander's Motor Company and Alexander's Prestige, which are based in Boroughbridge, North Yorkshire, have changed their product range and increased their manufacturing capacity.

The restructured group, which will trade as Alexander's Motor Company, has moved into a 2m showroom.

The original business – Alexander's Motor Company – was founded six years ago by Mr Brimelow, the managing director , with just 2,000 capital, to sell second-hand, mid-range sports cars and manufacture horse boxes.

He has grown the business to 7m turnover and 28 staff. In 2005, he founded Alexander's Prestige with Mr North. The company sells sports and prestige cars. It has grown to 11m turnover and employs seven staff.

Mr Brimelow, 32, who is dyslexic, left school with no formal qualifications and started out with a burger van on the same site as his latest business venture.

The new enlarged business – where Mr Brimelow and Mr North are both directors – has stopped selling mid-range cars to concentrate on the high-growth sports and prestige cars market.

The business will also make and sell more of Mr Brimelow's horse boxes, which he designs himself.

Mr Brimelow said: "My teachers told me I would be able to find work only emptying rubbish bins but I had to get on as best I could.

"I never dreamed when I was selling burgers that I would own a multi-million-pound business on the same site only six years later but failure at school made me really want to work hard.

"I started manufacturing horse-boxes because my fiance, Sarah Flesher, an experienced competitive horse rider, needed one and I could not find one of the right quality with acceptable after-sales service."

Jeremy Bowers, Yorkshire Bank North Yorkshire FSC Business partner, said: "The merger is an exciting move and we are pleased to be supporting the business."

Corporate finance director at Yorkshire accountants, Garbutt & Elliott, Jeremy Oliver, advised Alexander's Motor Company and Alexander's Prestige on the merger, and James Towler, a corporate finance partner at law firm Langleys, led a team which advised the companies and Yorkshire Bank.