Firm's new £2.5m factory to open
Source: Eastern Daily Press
An East Anglian firm that provides cladding to the construction industry is set to open a new £2.5m factory this month to expand production.
Last summer Multi Fab, which makes a wide range of sheet metal products, began work on the site at Bunns Bank industrial estate in Attleborough in a move to meet increased demand.
Managing director Simon Gladwin said: “You can only do so much work in one factory. We were up to capacity and we recognised that.”
The expansion was part of an ongoing goal to achieve a three-week turnaround from receiving an order to despatching goods.
This week 15 new members of staff were taken on to bring total staff to 64 at the firm and 46 at sister company English Architectural Glazing, which share headquarters in Mildenhall, Suffolk.
Mr Gladwin said turnover at Multi Fab was expected to rise from £2m to £2.4m this year, with profits set to dip slightly to about £100,000, while EAG would see turnover up slightly to £16m with profits down from £2.4m to £514,000, largely due to the cost of the new site.
Mr Gladwin said that narrower margins on construction contracts and a slowdown in new projects was also a factor, but said orders had recently started to pick up.
EAG, which provides windows, doors and other products, relies entirely on the construction industry and Multi Fab sees about 85pc of its turnover from the same source.
“The construction industry has been one of the hardest hit in the recession. We're quite fortunate in that a lot of our work is long term,” said Mr Gladwin.
“We were very fortunate last year in that we had gained a lot of orders to carry out last year which had a better margin than today.”
The firm has already lined up £14m of work for the next 18 months, including a £9m project to supply glazing and cladding for a new school project in Holland Park, London.
Multi Fab has also branched out into making bespoke clothing racks for department stores and industrial trolleys and was also looking to achieve certification to sell and install photovoltaic solar panels.