Upbeat solutions for a depressed market

As part of a five-year expansion plan, contract equipment manufacturer Texol Technical Solutions is to create over 250 jobs, many in engineering and product design. Despite the recession in engineering, and the problems facing the electronics and telecommunications industries, the Dundee-based company plans to more than double its workforce within the next five years, said […]

As part of a five-year expansion plan, contract equipment manufacturer Texol Technical Solutions is to create over 250 jobs, many in engineering and product design.

Despite the recession in engineering, and the problems facing the electronics and telecommunications industries, the Dundee-based company plans to more than double its workforce within the next five years, said chairman Ken Ingram. Texol also aims to increase turnover from a forecast £12m in 2001 to £50m by 2006.

‘The telecoms, electronics and agriculture sectors have been struggling, but that does not mean everything is bad at the moment. people are still buying goods and there are sectors that are doing well, like oil and gas.’

Texol was created in 1998, with a £500,000 employee buy-out of the metal parts division of US cash-machine maker NCR, which the parent company planned to shut down.

The company, which develops products from initial idea, through prototype to early production, is looking to expand through both organic growth and acquisitions, and already has a significant section of the low to medium-volume product manufacturing market, said Ingram.

The company plans to stay in the development and early production end of the market, as it offers better margins than high- volume manufacturing. Its customer base includes electronics, food processing, power generation, oil and gas, automotive and telecommunications firms.

Texol is hoping to recruit both design and manufacturing engineers, and recent redundancies in the Scottish electronics industry should make it easier to find qualified professionals, Ingram said. ‘A lot of people have come out of other industries, and they have not all been shop floor workers – some have been design engineers. We believe there is sufficient talent in the market, and with two good universities nearby, we should be able to attract graduates and experienced engineers.’

As a result of the employee buy-out a large number of Texol staff are shareholders. ‘It gives them a sense of ownership. If you consider all the gloom in the sector, everyone here believes there are still opportunities,’ said Ingram.