An investment in research has paid dividends for a Shropshire manufacturer as it develops new export markets ahead of Britain’s departure from Europe.
Fabweld Steel Products, which produces drainage and access covers at its Telford headquarters, has secured a new deal in Israel and is awaiting product approval for a £250,000 contract in the Middle East off the back of its strategy to target new non-EU customers.
The firm launched the investigation into new overseas markets as part of its bid to increase export by around 10 per cent. It worked with the Department for International Trade to identify geographical areas to focus on, liaised with the British Embassy in the relevant countries to make further in-roads and conducted overseas trade missions to develop relationships with potential customers.
Exports already account for 10 per cent of FSP’s annual turnover but the new leads will ensure that its export business still has opportunities for growth, said Managing Director Richard Hilton.
He said: “This has been a deliberate pro-active strategy to make sure that overseas trade remains a significant portion of our business and can grow, regardless of our future position within Europe.
“We still anticipate doing business with EU countries where we have a good reputation and established contacts and suppliers. But the uncertainty over the shape of Britain’s future trade relationships gave additional weight to our decision to explore new markets.
“We have supplied products outside of the EU before but this has been a targeted programme to future proof FSP and safeguard our international trade. FSP’s ability to offer bespoke products alongside its stock range of fabricated steel access covers and associated drainage products with rapid turnaround times has established its reputation as one of the UK’s foremost manufacturers of its type.
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