Investment fuels growth at fantastic plastic Hull firm
By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 2 Aug 2017
MAJOR investment in resources, plant and machinery has helped to fuel significant growth at a Hull manufacturer.
Hurst Plastics, in Somerden Road, manufactures doors and related products for clients across the UK and Europe.
The family-owned firm, which is currently celebrating its 20th anniversary, has this year seen sales of its fire doors rise more than 40 per cent, with sales of composite doors within the trade and commercial markets growing by 10 and 20 per cent respectively.
Following a period of rapid growth, staffing levels at the company are up to more than 120.
Now, to meet rising demand, the firm has invested almost £1m in its operations, enabling it to ramp up production at its two factories in the city while improving customer experience through the development of its account management system.
Sales director Mark Atkinson has been with the company since it was founded.
He said: “The business went through a significant growth period, then like all companies in the industry, in 2008 we saw a decline in demand due to the recession.
“But we laboured through, adapted the business accordingly, and once we had worked our way through the difficult years we began to reinvest as much as we could, in preparation for the future.
“The past five years have seen the business return to strong profitable growth, and this has put us in a position and given us the confidence to further invest.”
One of the latest ventures has been a £500,000 investment in 15 new eco-friendly Mercedes-Benz Sprinter vans, which have been supplied by Northside Truck and Van in Henry Boot Way.
Jon Brake, Hurst Plastics’ transport manager, said: “We deliver up to 7,500 door panels and 1,500 composite doors a month so it’s vital to optimise speed, accuracy and efficiency, whilst reducing our impact on the environment.
“Despite taking on more sizeable contracts, we’ve also continued to streamline all deliveries to reduce fuel consumption.”
The lion’s share of Hurst Plastics’ sales comes from composite doors, with fire doors representing almost a quarter of the firm’s turnover.
However, demand for more “mature” products continues to grow, and each week the company manufactures at least 2,000 door panels a week.
Mr Atkinson said: “We are very pleased with our performance over the past 12 months, particularly in composite doors and composite fire doors, which have both delivered impressive growth.
“We are very encouraged by these results, particularly in the commercial sector where there is plenty of further growth potential in social and local authority housing.
“We are proud of our achievements and, despite being in a competitive industry, we maintain the lead in some key areas.”
Mr Atkinson paid tribute to the staff at Hurst Plastics, who he said were without doubt the company’s greatest asset.
“20 per cent of our workforce has been with the company since day one, myself included, which says as much about the people as it does about the company,” he said. “There are lots of opportunities ahead. We have to temper these with challenges, such as Brexit and consumer confidence, but we have a great team and great products so are in a strong position for the future.”