A forward-looking Worcestershire automotive supplier has sealed a major quality award and is now promising to smash the £350,000 annual sales barrier for the first time.
Malvern Plastics, which employs four people at its Spring Lane Industrial Estate, used support from supply chain initiative Accelerate to land the ISO 9001:2001 accreditation in just four months.
The achievement could open doors for the specialist injection moulder, with the company now able to tender for new contracts in the auto, aerospace, electrical and water sectors.
Managing director Ian Grizzell said: "We have been carving out quite a reputation for producing low volume bushes and piston seals for door closers and components for wiper motors, most noticeably with the emphasis on added value.
"Whilst business has grown steadily, we recognised that we needed to gain the ISO quality award, in order to secure existing orders, unlock potential new contracts and diversify into new areas.
"The challenge now is to use established partnerships within all our key sectors to maximise the opportunities presented by the standard."
Mr Grizzell and partner Robert Shuker set up Malvern Plastics two years ago after deciding to use the expertise they had gained in residue moulds to supply low volume, high-specification parts.
Initially targeted at its core automotive and electrical markets, the firm has quickly transferred its expertise into more diverse areas, such as water systems for shower manufacturers and a tie-up with the equestrian industry in Walsall.
Mr Grizzell said: "We are currently producing the handle for the only riding crop still manufactured in England.
"This requires us working to the intricate design of the saddlery company and often requires short lead times in small quantities."
Accelerate, which provides strategic and financial support to the automotive supply chain, provided funding for a specialist consultant to work with Malvern on the quality accreditation.
Andy Webster, Adviser at Business Link Herefordshire & Worcestershire, said: " Getting someone impartial to provide an informed view of the firm's procedures really helped speed up the entire process, especially in writing the manual for the stringent audit process. This expertise ensured that Ian and the team concentrated on the day-today activities that will ultimately benefit from being ISO 9001:2000 compliant."
Managed by Birmingham Chamber of Commerce, Accelerate has recently announced that it has invested over £300,000 into the Worcestershire supply chain, helping 34 businesses compete in the global marketplace.