Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Manufacturing Award; Back in the Spotlight and One of the Main Engines of Private Sector Growth for the North East, This Honour Is for Best in Class Sponsored By

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Manufacturing Award; Back in the Spotlight and One of the Main Engines of Private Sector Growth for the North East, This Honour Is for Best in Class Sponsored By

Article excerpt

DURHAM AND WEARSIDE: ALM Engineering Solutions, Newton Aycliffe ALM Engineering Solutions designs and manufactures cubicle and architectural hardware, such as locks, hinges and hat and coat hooks.

The business, which has 31 staff and a PS2.3m annual turnover, has enjoyed consistent growth since setting up in 1994. It was hit by a sudden downturn in orders due to construction projects ending because of the recession in 2008 and the management decided to diversify into precision engineering as a sub contract service, targeting the growth markets of oil and gas, power generation and civil aviation.

Runners up: Design Xpress, Derwentside: Design Xpress is a printing company which produces exhibition and display materials and installs them. After being set up in 1999, the company suffered troubles in 2006 when its main client Kwik Save ceased trading. Production director Juliette Middlebrough bought out the company and turned it around, winning contracts from large companies. The company is now hoping to expand by using emarketing and mail shots to acquire new contracts.

Rayovac, Washington: Rayovac makes the world''s best-selling zinc air hearing aid battery and supplies it to over 80 countries in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific from the UK. The business employs 184 people in the North East.

TEESSIDE: NIFCO UK, Stockton NIFCO UK is a Japanese-owned automotive plastic parts manufacturer supplying direct to OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) including Nissan, Ford, Toyota and Honda.

Albeit Japanese-owned, Nifco UK has operated without any Japanese head office colleagues over the last five years, demonstrating their confidence in the abilities of the local team of senior management.

It says it is an A-Z of plastic injection moulding, from product design through to quality and dispatch predominantly for the automotive industry.

Runners up: Cleveland Cascades Ltd, Stockton: The firm''s loading chutes are highly bespoke engineering installations, whose specifications are dictated by diverse customer requirements such as loading rates, bulk material handled, national engineering standards, installation type and local climatic conditions. …

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