Black Country toolmaker plans to double in size

HCM Engineering, based in Lye has completed a £500,000 investment programme to double in size.

The company plans to double its turnover in the next five years by investing in two new CNC machines, measuring facilities and a total makeover of its IT system and logistics.

The growth strategy was supported by the Manufacturing Advisory Board (MAS) and has helped HCM formalise a long-term plan and take advantage of funding from MAS and the Regional Growth Fund.

The firm, which designs and manufacturers tooling for aluminium die-casting foundries in high pressure, gravity and low pressure processes plus specialist machining, is family owned and employs 24 staff, including six apprentices.

The company provides tools mainly for aluminium, zinc and moulding companies, with a strong focus on the automotive sector but also supplies rail, military, agriculture and green technologies sectors.

The plans coincide with the manufacturer’s 45th birthday.

Managing director Simon Hanson said: “Over the last 45 years the company has had to evolve and thrive and the upturn in the automotive industry has been very welcome as its helped us to futureproof the next chapter in the company’s history.

“What has stood us in good stead and enabled us to outlast many of our competitors is the ‘can do’ approach which I think embodies the company and the wider Black Country manufacturing base.

“Coming from the Black Country, I honestly feel it is in our DNA to make things and I feel a huge sense of pride in our ability to not only make things but make them well.”

Rachel Eade, automotive supply chain lead at MAS, said: “HCM has made a clear investment in its own future, not just through the investment in the new machinery and processes, but also in its people.

“Its bespoke apprenticeship programme should be an inspiration to others and shows how investing in people can make such a difference.

“We were delighted to be able to help, particularly by guiding the company through its strategy development and the process of bidding for Regional Growth Fund money which has had such a huge impact on the scale and speed of expansion.”