£1.1m funding for FC Laser

Ilkeston-based precision laser cutting company, FC Laser, has secured £1.1m in funding from Lombard and NatWest.

The deal has helped fund the acquisition of two state-of-the-art cutting machines that will improve efficiency by 40%, giving the business a significant competitive advantage.
Danny Fantom, managing director at FC Laser, says: “Our new equipment means we will be able to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to productivity, putting us in a strong position to grow year on year.” Veronica Wales, Lombard relationship manager, adds: “FC Laser prides itself on both cost efficiency and the high quality of its products and services, and it has been extremely rewarding to have helped the business continue in this tradition.”
For further information www.lombard.co.uk

RSD presses forward with £750,000 contract haul

Investment in a new machine from Worcester Presses is helping a Cannock automotive supplier win over £750,000 of new contracts.

RSD Pressings, which supplies components for seats, sub-frames, cross car beams, bumpers and bodies, has installed a new GTX300 Chin Fong progression press and can now take on much bigger parts for tier-one customers and major car manufacturers.
Nearly £350,000 has been spent on the machine and a Tomac TLN4 coil line, with more than £100,000 of funding secured from Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Grants 4 Growth, and the European Regional Development Fund. Three new jobs have already been created as a result of the investment and a further eight will be recruited over the course of the next 12 months once production starts on the projects already secured.
“The components we manufacture at our new facility in Cannock end up in millions of cars all over the world, including Aston Martin, BMW, Jaguar Land Rover, Nissan and Volvo,” explains operations director Daniel Burton.
“Worcester Presses came in, looked at our requirements and then developed a turnkey solution that involved the GTX 300, the latest HMI touch screen control and new Tomac TLN4 coil line which will increase our progression and coil feeding capabilities,” he adds. “This machine has doubled our bed size and already led to several new orders that we wouldn’t have been able to take on previously. There is still lots of capacity on it too, which means we are looking for even more new work.”
For further information www.worcesterpresses.co.uk

£2m sales boost for Pressmark

A Warwickshire-based metal-forming specialist is celebrating a major transformation in fortunes not long after a management buy-in (MBI) was completed.

Pressmark Pressings, which provides high-volume components for automotive manufacturers was bought by management team Alan Gardner, John Nollett and Les Wilkins after they spotted an opportunity to turn around one of the sector’s most under-recognised businesses.
Backed by their own cash injection and funding from ABN AMRO and Cambridge and Counties Bank, the three entrepreneurs have used their knowledge and contacts to put in place a number of new processes that have seen the business secure more than £2m of additional contracts to supply pressed parts and sub-assemblies which will be used in new models for Honda and Nissan.
On its current site in Carylon Road, the firm has 26 large-bed presses, ranging from 150 to 1200 tonnes that allow for the production of different size products in both standard metals and exotic alloys. Moreover, the company has created over 25 full time jobs since the MBI.
Chairman Les Wilkins says: “There’s a strong belief between the management team that we can expand by undertaking project management of multi operation/stage work. One recent example is how we worked with a Japanese manufacturer of complex electromechanical components that was investigating production in the UK. It was a tentative enquiry at first, but we have given them advice and guidance during the feasibility study and, subsequently, provided quotes for tooling as well as production and assembly of components. It is the nature of the work that the lead times are quite long, but if you win it, you should retain it for the life of the model.”
For further information www.pressmark.co.uk

£1m+ investment at Royal Mint

A UK-based supplier of press technology is playing a crucial role in the production of the new £1 coin.

Bruderer UK has installed a state-of-the-art machine into the Royal Mint’s Llantrisant facility, providing additional speed, capacity and flexibility. Capable of up to 825 strokes per minute, the BSTA 1600-117B2 is responsible for creating the hard cut blanks that form one of the first processes in the manufacture of the pound coin.
The machine has been specified with an 1170 mm press bed length and is capable of feeding material up to 500 mm wide by 12 mm thick – suitable for tooling relative to different types of currency production now and in the future. Bruderer’s BSTA 1600-117B2 also comes equipped with the latest B2 control system, meaning everything can be controlled from the HMI, including the setting of feeds and speeds, together with monitoring the stamping operation.
Mervyn Evans, engineering manager at the Royal Mint, says: “We are pleased to continue our long-standing relationship with Bruderer and I am delighted with the performance of the latest machine so far. It is delivering the speed and accuracy we need, and is a fundamental part of a production process that will eventually produce over 1.5 billion pound coins. The larger-than-normal tool bed also means that a range of materials for different denomination blanks can be processed. This is an ideal solution for our growing international client base.”
For further information www.bruderer.co.uk

Celebrating six decades

Starrett, is celebrating six decades of manufacturing in the UK.

The company, which was founded in the US, opened its UK factory in Jedburgh in 1958, a site that has since grown to become one of the enterprise’s principal manufacturing locations. Today, there are over 150 people employed at the 200,000 sq ft facility in Scotland, which produces in excess of 2 million hole saws per year, as well as
a range of other saws and products, such as optical profile projectors and bandsaw blades. The site forms the epicentre of Starrett’s UK and European operations, and currently supplies products to over
50 countries.
For further information www.starrett.co.uk

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