Good news for town with firm on the up

Fleetwood Sheetmetal staff celebrate the creation of new jobs and the passing of the �1m turnover barrier.
Fleetwood Sheetmetal staff celebrate the creation of new jobs and the passing of the �1m turnover barrier.

FLEETWOOD Sheetmetal is on the up with a £1m celebration after winning a survival battle and creating new jobs.

The future looked grim for the company 12 months ago when parent company FTS went bust, just one year short of its centenary, and admin staff lost their jobs.

It was a real blow to the town.

But a year on, the metal fabrication company has just gone through the £1m turnover barrier and is providing work for 15 more people than the nine workforce it began with last year.

The buy-out was engineered by new company chairman Malcolm Beech and Paul Furnevall who is operations director.

Mr Beech said: “It’s a wonderful achievement and we are delighted with how things have gone.

“And we have managed to do this despite a bad debt loss caused by the collapse of a Preston company.

“It cost us £60,000. There are companies out there who lost an awful lot more but, pro rata, ours was probably the biggest loss.

“Our turnover expectation for the year was £700,000 but we have surpassed the £1m mark.

“We fully expect to improve on that. Our projection for 2012 is £1.3m.”

Of the workers benefiting from the company’s revival, six are full-time employees and nine are local sub-contractors who have been handed additional work.

Mr Beech said: “It’s been a good year but I have to focus on what’s ahead rather than what has happened

“The bad debt loss was a big blow to our cash flow but we have come through it.

“We have learned we can’t have too much at risk with one company and we have had to make sure we have a good range of customers.”

Fleetwood Sheetmetal specialises in ducting and other fabrication work and had recently gained work at the ICI Victrex site at Thornton to add to important contracts with Bae Warton and BNFL at Salwick.

Mr Beech added: “We are also upping our game by going to quality accreditation.

“To do this while in the middle of an economic downturn in good and we are pleased to be creating good jobs for Fleetwood.”