A £250,000 investment drive with Worcester Presses is helping a leading Black Country metal pressing specialist take advantage of new domestic and reshoring opportunities.
Cotmor Tool & Presswork, which employs 16 people at its Brierley Hill factory, has seen sales soar to £2m following the easing of lockdown and is now setting its sights on an additional £1m of orders over the next 12 months.
The company has formed a strategic partnership with the nearby press supplier to capitalise on this growth and this has resulted in the installation of two 110 tonne and one 160 tonne Chin Fong machines.
Two state-of-the-art Tomac decoilers have also been introduced, in addition to Titan monitoring technology designed to improve tool and press life and a die cushion to help accommodate multi-functional tools.
Cotmor (Group L): (l-r) Russell Hartill (Worcester Presses), Louise Forrest, David Cotterill (both Cotmor) and Emily Jackson (Worcester Presses)
“Volumes have bounced back stronger than any of us expected and this has given us the impetus to look at new equipment that will make us faster and give us capacity to take on up to £1m of new work,” explained David Cotterill, who runs Cotmor with his wife Wendy and daughters Louise and Natalie.
“80% of our work is overseas and we ship deep drawn, precision and progression presswork to clients in Brazil, China, Germany, Japan, Turkey and South Korea. A lot of these components are technically difficult to produce and, since lockdown, we are seeing an increasing number of enquiries from firms looking to reshore to achieve security of supply.”
He continued: “We knew we needed more capacity so started talking to Worcester Presses about our future requirements and the flexibility of the machines to be able to produce components destined for agriculture, commercial vehicle, foundry and the food and drink sector.
“After much discussion, we agreed on the robustness and durability of the Chin Fongs and the installation process and training were superb. Now the challenge is to win the work to fill them.”
Worcester Presses has experienced a similar upturn in fortunes, seeing demand for its range of hydraulic and mechanical presses and ancillary equipment rise by 30% over the last six months.
The Dudley-based company, which has taken on an additional two people, has been working with Cotmor to deliver a tailored ‘production’ solution for about nine months, culminating in the installation of the three presses.
It is now exploring the possibility of sourcing a 400 tonne Chin Fong to give the press and toolmaking specialist access to one of its biggest machines to date.
Russell Hartill, Managing Director at Worcester Presses, went on to add: “The Cotmor partnership is a fantastic example of two Black Country businesses working together to deliver world class manufacturing.
“David and his team’s expertise is second to none and, when this is combined with our technical knowledge and the performance of our presses, you have all the ingredients you need to be competitive and win work from overseas.”
Louise Forrest, Financial Director at Cotmor, concluded: “We have been really impressed with the performance of the Chin Fongs and these presses are definitely up there with some of the best in the market for performance, durability and production flexibility.”