£8m investment is Ideal for proud boiler manufacturer
MILESTONE MOMENT: Deputy Lord Mayor Cllr Pete Allen talking to production director Andy Sutton, left, and team manager Karl Hunter.
By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 6 Sep 2017
ONE of Hull’s largest manufacturers, Ideal Boilers, is geared up for growth, as £8 million of investment is piped in by new owner Groupe Atlantic.
Acquired two years ago, the French company is now moving its UK headquarters to the city.
Adam Foy, product and marketing director, at Groupe Atlantic told how Ideal is now at the forefront of the business and said it will see improvements as a result of huge investments.
He said: “The investment to the Groupe Atlantic UK headquarters in Hull has been significant, and a number of the improvements are very noticeable, we are investing in excess of £8m in 2017-18 alone.
“This is across all areas in the business, however manufacturing has seen the biggest change, with new cells to increase efficiency and improve quality of the products we produce in Hull.
“This is also being the case with additional manufacturing cells to centralise boiler manufacturing in Hull for the UK Division.
“The Hull site is a very important strategic centre of excellence for the entire group, not only is it the UK division's head office, but an important manufacturing location and the base of a wide skill set utilised throughout the operation.”
Groupe Atlantic bought the west Hull firm, which has 500 staff and has been major employer in the city for more than a century, in January 2015 for an undisclosed sum.
The company has tripled its growth since 2009, but still sees development in the UK as its main priority.
Mr Foy said: “We are constantly looking to grow our UK market share. The UK is one of the biggest boiler markets in Europe and our continued growth here is our number one objective.
“Since 2009 we have more than tripled our volume. The move to connected products also presents an exciting opportunity.
“Outside of this we are developing export markets and looking at our European colleagues to help open opportunities abroad.”
Groupe Atlantic operates from 17 locations internationally, including nine in France.
Mr Foy said: “We focus heavily on quality and reliability in all our products. This has been one of the keys to the growth in recent years and our products are one of the most reliable products available on the market.
“Innovation is an important topic group wide; it’s one of our company values and something great focus is given to."
And the company has hit another impressive milestone by producing its two millionth Logic boiler, after introducing the model in 2009.
The firm marked the passing with a celebration at its National Avenue factory, with an appearance from Hull's Deputy Lord Mayor Pete Allen.
In 2013, Ideal Boilers received the Queen’s Award for Enterprise and Innovation for the range.
Mr Foy said: “The Logic boiler was launched in 2009. This has been an incredible success and something all the teams at Ideal have worked very hard for. Quality remains at the heart of everything we do and ensures the products stay reliable and relevant to the changing markets.
“At the start of 2017 the range received the Good Housekeeping Reader Recommended status for the second time, after first receiving the award in 2013. In 2016, one in four boilers sold in the UK were Ideal boilers.”