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NPIF-Mercia investment helps Cti forge a successful year

Posted on 14 Jan 2022 and read 2176 times
NPIF-Mercia investment helps Cti forge a successful yearRotherham-based Castings Technology International Ltd (Cti), is celebrating a successful year, following a management buy-out of the business from the University of Sheffield in January 2021.

In tandem, the business also secured a £2 million fund-raising round led by Nucleus Commercial Finance and NPIF – Mercia Debt Finance, which is managed by Mercia and part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF).

The company is a world-leading provider of manufacturing, technology, expertise and services to the cast metals sector and global supply chain. It has been perfecting its technology over many years, working hand-in-hand with multinational blue-chip companies through both R&D and long-term supply agreements. The company now forms a critical player in a supply chain servicing multi-billion-pound contracts.

Since completing the deal, funding raised has allowed the company to expand rapidly. It has invested further into product development; added to its sales and marketing infrastructure and resource; and expanded its world-class manufacturing facility, which is based at the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC).

Earlier this year, as a direct result of investments made, Cti produced the largest single component it has cast in its 98-year history. Made from commercially pure titanium, it is believed to be the largest-ever titanium part poured into a ceramic mould. Tipping the scales in its shipped condition at 320kg, with an envelope of 1,000mm2 x 600mm high, the casting showcases several novel casting techniques developed in-house at Cti, the heart of cast metal innovation.

Casting complex components

The casting formed part of an order from an OEM Japanese customer and will be used as a high-pressure pump in a demanding corrosive industrial application. Titanium casting production is complex and requires expertise not only in metallurgy, but foundry methodology.

The company has casting capabilities in almost any type of metal alloy and has a 1,200kg titanium vacuum melting capability, which ranks it as one of the largest in the world. In conjunction with customers’ design teams, Cti is casting complex components supplied into the aerospace, defence, chemical nuclear and marine markets.

Managing director Richard Cook, a highly experienced engineer, and chairman Kevin Parkin, a local entrepreneur, lead Cti’s management team. They are supported by a highly experienced non-executive director team that includes Professor John Campbell, Graham Honeyman – former chief executive at Sheffield Forgemasters — as well as Brian Robb and Steve Irwin, two highly-experienced castings experts that have worked for many years with Rolls-Royce.

Mr Parkin said: “It has been an exciting year for us, as the MBO marked one of the most important moments in our 98-year history. In tandem, thanks to the support of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund, Mercia and Nucleus Commercial Finance, we have been able to push forward with our growth plans. We are innovators by nature, and this has allowed us to fulfil world-first orders and deliver on contracts for some of the world’s biggest brands.”

Sean Hutchinson at the British Business Bank said: “The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund is proud to have supported Cti in taking this important step, through NPIF — Mercia Debt Finance. The deal demonstrates the impact that investment can have here in the North of England, helping to facilitate growth and create new opportunities, and we look forward to following Cti’s progress.”

The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund has provided a significant loan to Cti to support the growth business plan, with Andy Tyas and Pete Sorsby from the team at Mercia Asset Management leading on the transaction on behalf of the fund, with working capital facilities provided by Financial Institution, Nucleus Commercial Finance.

The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund project is supported financially by the European Union using funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and the European Investment Bank.