An award-winning South Wales manufacturing company is set to see its revenue from exports skyrocket to £15m after securing several deals following growing demand for its products across the globe.
Pontyclun-based Concrete Canvas, which manufactures innovative flexible concrete fabric, is on track to boost its exports by 20% to £15m by the end of this financial year, thanks to a string of international deals it has recently secured with support from the Welsh Government.
The company is eyeing significant expansion in the US – a key target market – as a route to export growth, having partnered with more than 12 new distributors in the country in the last 12 months. The deals will provide it with access to hundreds of new clients and Concrete Canvas expects its sales in the US to triple by 2025 as a direct result, accounting for 30% of its overall exports.
Founded in 2005, Concrete Canvas’ innovative concrete fabric sets to form a thin, durable and waterproof layer. The product is used in construction and provides over seven times greater abrasion resistance than traditional poured concrete as well as lower carbon emissions and a faster installation time.
Exports currently account for 85% of the company’s trade, with its products sold in over 80 countries across Australia, North America, Europe and South East Asia. In recent years, it has set up six international offices off the back of its export success including in Kuala Lumpur, Dubai, Milan, Budapest, Houston and Sydney, with clients including Mott Macdonald, Jacobs, Aecom and Atkins.
The Welsh firm, which employs 70 full time staff, is now set to further grow its global presence by working with a range of international irrigation ministries following the launch of its new product, CCX™, which has been designed to line canal infrastructure to prevent erosion and reduce water seepage loss. As it stands, approximately 30% of the world’s irrigated water transported via canals is estimated to be lost due to canal leakage – something Concrete Canvas hopes to change.
As a new avenue for the company, Concrete Canvas anticipates expansion into this market will deliver huge growth. The firm projects that 50% of its future international revenue will come directly through new business involving the CCX™ product and it is already in talks with potential clients in Egypt, France and India for deals worth several million.
Will Crawford, director at Concrete Canvas said: “It’s been incredible to see how exporting has completely transformed our revenue streams. We now have around 60 distributors worldwide who have exclusive contracts to sell our products. Having a global network has accelerated our growth, while building our resilience to disruptions in the market.”
Key to Concrete Canvas’ export success has been its regular presence at international trade shows and trade missions, supported by the Welsh Government, enabling it to meet prospective customers that have directly led to new business.
Looking ahead, the company hopes to target more business in North America, India and central Asia, which it sees as key growth markets, with further support from the Welsh Government through market access programs including research projects, supported exhibitions and trade missions, as well as by being introduced by Welsh Government export specialists to contacts within those regions.
Will added: “A huge part of our success has been finding the right sales partners on the ground in new markets and the Welsh Government has been instrumental in helping us achieve this. Entry into new international markets can sometimes present challenges, especially when it comes to educating the market on the new, innovative materials that we produce. Having people on the ground has been invaluable to us in gaining entry and, ultimately trust, in new territories.”
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