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Structure Flex, Peacock Way, Melton Constable Structure Flex makes giant bags, lifting straps and lorry curtain sides Family run buisness Matt Doughty (Sales) L Ian Doughty (MD) R Looking at the design of a lorry curtain For:Edp Copy:Edp Archant © 2006 (01603) 772434
By Annabelle Dickson
Wednesday, September 5, 2012
The director of North Norfolk based Structure-flex has put the company’s recent growth down to its new technology and export success.
The flexible fabric supplier, which saw its annual turnover reach more than £10m in its year end in August, has seen a 62pc growth in sales compared to the same period last year, with a corresponding increase in the company’s profits.
The increased sales and profits come a year after the company disposed of its polypropylene FIBC business in 2010, which Ian Doughty, director of Structure-flex, said had allowed the company to focus its business approach.
Mr Doughty said: “As well as having a strong focus on new products and services, we have also invested in capital equipment and processes and have completed a key strategic start up investment in the Middle East, which will strengthen our links to markets there.”
The company, which employs 85 staff at its facility in Melton Constable, said the exploitation of wide format digital printing techniques had been crucial to Structure-flex’s growth.
The family owned business, which counts Greene King, Irn-Bru, Wilkinger Hot Dogs and Skinner’s Pet Foods among its customers, recently invested £300,000 in new technology in its graphic division, which Mr Doughty said would put the company into a leading position in the design and supply of trailer curtains with graphics.
Mr Doughty said: “This technology led approach, combined with our proven levels of quality and service has delivered a 38pc growth over the last year in our commercial vehicle business and improved margin return despite market demand being relatively flat.
“Product innovation is also part of our daily routine and we have delivered a whole range of customer led developments that continue to demonstrate our strong reputation in the demanding crane test market, as well as new applications in flood prevention and emergency response.”
Paul Reeve, general manager of Structure-flex said they had recently seen an increase in work in the Gulf of Mexico as the oil firms begun to recover from the oil disaster.
The company supplies bulk bags and transporting to the industry.
Mr Reeve added that the company was optimistic about the future.
He said: “I think we are fortunate in that the sectors we supply should remain buyant and we should capture future business from that.
“We have invested in the new digital printer so we expect to grow the business.”
Two hundred jobs are set to be created after one of west Norfolk’s largest businesses was granted permission to expand its King’s Lynn facilities.