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Family ownership generates rapid growth at Victor

Posted on 24 Jan 2023. Edited by: John Hunter. Read 1246 times.
Family ownership generates rapid growth at VictorVictor Manufacturing started in central Bradford in 1947 manufacturing paint tins and dryers for tea towels back. Today, the company has a 108,000ft2 facility on the outskirts of Keighley, a turnover approaching £12 million, employs over 125 people, and is a leading supplier of equipment for the catering, hospitality, and retail sectors, specialising in both standard and custom equipment and counters to ensure food is at optimum temperature at the point of service.

In 2018 the company underwent a management buy-out and is now owned by Victor Manufacturing’s former managing director Phil Williams, with several of the Williams family working with him, including his wife Sharon, children Aaron and Faye, and Faye’s husband Robert.

During the pandemic, Victor Manufacturing committed to remain open to satisfy demand for essential front line care service, retail, and education supplies. One of the major projects undertaken during the first few months of the pandemic was winning the contract with a major high street chain that specialises in selling coffee and baked goods and needed Covid-19 screens made from glass with metal frames. Contracts to supply equipment for Nightingale Hospitals were also of great importance.
However, with pressure on fuel and transportation costs as well as raw materials, Victor Manufacturing has been seeking to maximising efficiency in all areas.

The company’s sheet metal fabrication includes one Bystronic 6kW fibre laser cutting system supplied by Coventry-based Bystronic, which has been recently fitted with automation that includes an Antil storage tower with automatic loading and unloading and feeds laser profiled material to six Bystronic press brakes for folding.

Phil Williams said: “Upgrading the automation and software and standardising the Bystronic platform has allowed the night shift to run automatically, reducing the number of skilled operators required in this department and increasing capacity dramatically. Furthermore, introducing a robot to load one of the press brakes is something that will further automate the folding process for repetitive parts. Sometimes we might have 500 identical parts requiring four folds; this is a boring and repetitive task for an operator but one that could be undertaken by a robot.

“Another step to further improve the throughput of our sheet metal fabrications will be to have an in-house powder coating capability to improve the cost and lead time of currently outsourced coating and painting. Further investment in capital equipment will include a CNC router and an additional 3m press brake to handle our larger folding requirements.”