Glasgow’s Castle Precision Engineering wins record £80m order

A Scottish family firm and Sharing in Growth beneficiary Castle Precision Engineering has signed a contract valued at £80m with Rolls-Royce on a six-year programme.

Rolls Royce CEO Warren East (left) with Castle Precision Engineering's Yan Tiefenbrun (right)
Rolls Royce CEO Warren East (left) with Castle Precision Engineering’s Yan Tiefenbrun (right)

The new agreement will see Castle Precision Engineering supply Rolls-Royce with compressor cones, shafts, spacers, and turbine seal plates for the Trent family of aero-engines.

Yan Tiefenbrun, managing director of Castle Precision, said: “To significantly grow our activity with Rolls-Royce, a giant in the global aerospace industry, is a privilege and a fantastic endorsement of the high-quality precision engineering work we deliver here in the UK.

“Today’s announcement with Warren East (Chief Executive, Rolls Royce) is about us and our growth journey with SiG against a very challenging global environment to become a player in the critical rotators market. “

With the support of Sharing in Growth (SiG) & Scottish Enterprise, Castle Precision has embarked on a business change journey that has transformed the organisation’s approach to people and productivity and delivered leaner operations.

The introduction of manufacturing cells has led to major reductions in lead-time and improvements in productivity have underpinned the business’ ability to secure contracts of this scale in a globally competitive environment.

Yan noted: “SiG show you what good looks like. And they give you a framework for what an apt business model looks like. When you’re growing and you’re so focused on the daily grind, having that direction of where you’re going towards is really useful.”

The Scottish Secretary for the Economy Derek Mackay said: “Through our enterprise and skills agencies, the Scottish Government has been pleased to support this company to achieve its growth plans. I look forward to hearing more about the company’s success as it grows and flourishes in the aerospace sector.”

Andy Page, CEO of Sharing in Growth (SiG): SiG is “Red Bull for productivity.”
Andy Page, CEO of Sharing in Growth (SiG): SiG is “Red Bull for productivity.”

John Fitchett, strategic purchasing executive at Rolls-Royce, said: “We are continuing to see increasing demand for our Trent engines worldwide and suppliers with the right skills and performance, such as Castle Precision, have an important part to play in supporting our growth story. We look forward to continuing to work with Castle Precision and building on a well-established relationship.”

Castle Precision employs 120 people and manufactures components for a variety of industries including aerospace, petrochemicals, defence, and the automotive sector. It was set up by Yan Tiefenbrun’s grandfather Jack Tiefenbrun, a refugee from Europe.

Its early success derived on the back of orders from the Singer Sewing Machine Company, which employed 10,000 people in Clydeside at its height.

In 2013, the company was selected for Sharing in Growth – a £110m training programme that was set up to enhance the skills and capability of British aerospace companies.

It provides an intensive, four-year capability development training schedule which is tailored to suit each company’s specific needs. It is supported by some of the most prominent aerospace companies, including Airbus, BAE Systems, Boeing, Bombardier, GE, and Rolls-Royce, along with public bodies like the Regional Growth Fund.

Sharing in Growth’s CEO Andy Page said: “We are delighted with Castle’s success. Their sales have risen from £15m in 2016 to a forecast £25m next year. They truly exemplify why the Sharing in Growth programme is effective.

“We are helping some 60 aerospace companies, like Castle, beat the productivity challenge. By investing in business transformation companies make productivity and competitiveness gains to win more business. This gives them the funds to reinvest in people, technology and growth so that they win even more business. It’s a virtuous cycle.”


Reporting by Harry Wise