The increasing trend for reshoring in the manufacturing sector has reaped dividends for an Aldridge electronic components specialist.
One-LUX, which designs, assembles and supplies LED lighting control solutions, is set to break the £5 million turnover barrier for the first time this year.
The firm says it is currently flying high thanks to a deal to reshore the manufacture of two new products - its OMNI-LED and UNITY-LED ranges.
The company successfully identified supply chain partners in the UK to help it assemble and bring both the products to market, with the support of the Business Growth Service.
Both products, which are designed to aid safe evacuation by providing peace of mind and the required illumination, are poised to bring in an estimated £1 million-worth of additional sales for the firm in 2015.
Glynnis Murray, who founded One-LUX in 2008, said: “We’ve always designed our products in-house but previously offshored high volume lines to the Far East to ensure we remained competitive against our rivals.
“However, in the last year we had noticed a desire from our customers to buy British made products and this, when combined with demand for shorter lead times, made us consider exploring manufacturing closer to home.”
Explaining how the company enlisted help to achieve this, Ms Murray added: “Working with the Business Growth Service’s Manufacturing Advisory Service (MAS), we mapped out our supply chain requirement and then got signposted to a number of firms who could meet our requirements.
“We were pleasantly surprised at how competitive local suppliers were and, combined with the greater control we now have over lead times and quality, is going to be a major bonus as the demand for OMNI-LED and UNITY-LED will be significant.
“Our decision to place production with a UK sub-contract manufacturer has already created five jobs there, with more to come.”
One-LUX, which employs 25 people at its Aldridge facility, is also working with MAS on the introduction of digital addressable lighting interface (DALI) into the new ranges.
Mentoring support was received from MAS business growth manager Jas Bahra and GROW:OffshoreWind funding ensured the company could bring in an electronics specialist to help with prototyping, functionality and integration.
This ensured its products now sit on building management systems and can be remotely operated and tested.
One-LUX recently doubled its facility in Aldridge to 10,000 sq ft to grow its assembly capabilities, with plans in the pipeline to manufacture more products in the UK.
Speaking about the benefits of the Business Growth Service tie-up, Ms Murray said: “We can now supply a number of exciting new markets providing us with a great opportunity to grow past £5 million.
“The Business Growth Service understood our business and where we wanted to go, providing advice, guidance and funding support exactly when it mattered.”
Mr Bahra added: “This is a true reshoring success story and has the potential to create a lot more than the five jobs it has already generated.
“The management team is now in a perfect position to take advantage of greater supply chain control and improved flexibility.
“It is also tapping into support from Birmingham and Wolverhampton Universities to utilise 3D printing and we’ve played an active role in integrating numerous standalone systems, reducing paperwork and increased traceability in the process.”