Kirsty Davies-Chinnock, PPS managing directorProfessional Polishing Services
(PPS), a Black Country stainless steel polishing company that puts the finish on boutique hotels, nuclear reactors and life-saving medical equipment, has just completed its latest investment drive.
The manufacturer, which has increased its workforce by 25% since lockdown eased, has just installed a new dull polishing line to help boost capacity and achieve its target of £2 million sales by the end of 2022.
PPS has spent over £250,000 on the latest purchase and this gives it the capability to apply a variety of finishes, such as dull polish and satin finish, on to stainless steel, aluminium, brass and copper sheet.
It comes just two years after the firm took ownership of new extraction equipment, pick and place systems and two Autopilot PHA bright polishers with automated handling — acquisitions that were only operational for six months before Covid-19 struck.
Kirsty Davies-Chinnock, PPS managing director, said: “Anyone in the world can touch up to 30 things we have polished every day - not bad for a small manufacturer based in West Bromwich is it?”Escalating demand
She added: “Like many firms, we have had to withstand some tough times over the last 18 months, but the recovery is now on track and we are trying to put in place the technology we need to meet escalating demand from pretty much every sector, including automotive, construction, food and drink, nuclear and leisure.
“In the early days of the lockdown, we furloughed everyone except two senior managers and myself, who moved to the shopfloor to ensure work for the medical sector was completed. Before long we had to call staff back, as we were polishing steel that was going into ventilator stands and the big vats that were helping to develop the vaccines.”
She continued: “More than £750,000 has been invested in reinforcing our position as a market leader in the last three years and we are confident this will play a key role in us achieving record performance over the next twelve months.”
PPS offers a bespoke stainless steel and non-ferrous polishing service to a client base that spans the world, with its efforts seen as far afield as Hong Kong and Australia.
The company’s reputation for quality - all processes are governed by ISO 9001:2015 - and its commitment to fast lead times has seen it grow sales by £500,000 in the last 12 months, taking it to £1.7 million by the financial year-end.
Its strategy focuses on combining investment in the best equipment and the best people with a desire to tap into the knowledge of local universities, already taking on two interns from WMG to improve manufacturing efficiencies and process flow.
Ms Davies-Chinnock continued: “There are plenty of challenges in manufacturing, but I think we are all really pleased with how the economy appears to be bouncing back and we want to make sure we play our role in the recovery.
“The latest investment will give us the capacity to take on new work and deliver faster lead times, yet it isn’t the end of our spending. I have already got my eye on another two machines, which would be UK firsts for the polishing sector.”