Northants turbocharger manufacturer receives export boost

(L-R) Slawomir Soja (Fast Turbo), Adrian Waters (MGP), Lynn Rowley (Fast Turbo) and Glyn Jenks (AIM Professional Services)

A Northamptonshire automotive company that remanufactures vehicle turbochargers has received a boost of its own from the Manufacturing Growth Programme (MGP) in a bid to improve export performance.

Corby-based Fast Turbo, which employs five people and specialises in reconditioned turbochargers, vacuum alternators, electronic actuators and gasket kits, was put in touch with MGP and an expert in manufacturing strategy who worked alongside the management team to create a five-year pathway for the business.

Managing director Slawomir Soja said that the firm has been very successful in selling its products, both from its website and on eBay, but recognised that it could tap into additional markets around the world.

“We have very efficient in-house manufacturing processes, so we know that we are able to recondition turbochargers and other parts to a very high standard. Our sales and reputation reflect that,” said Soja.

“However, we recognised that we needed expert help in other areas if we were going to continue to achieve the level of growth we had set ourselves.

“MGP has been very supportive and given us access to a specialist, who has worked with us to identify the skills and weaknesses of the business and has identified a process of prioritisation that will help the company to focus on key areas. As a result, we are in the driving seat in taking our business forward.”

MGP Manufacturing growth manager Adrian Waters said: “The company was keen to develop its global markets and therefore was able to work with the consultant to gain a better understanding of the legal and emission-related requirements of other European markets, as well as ones further afield.”

“It has sold products to people as far away as Australia and recognised that it could be more consistent at doing this.

“One of the other key areas was identifying ways in which Slawomir could free up more of his time to work on the business instead of in it. This extra time has enabled him to think more strategically and have a great focus on longer-term objectives.”

The Manufacturing Growth Programme, which is funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and delivered by Economic Growth Solutions (EGS), is promising to fill the void left by the Manufacturing Advice Service (MAS) by providing access to specialist assistance to help manufacturers to grow and improve.

This will be achieved through an 18-strong network of experienced manufacturing growth managers, access to industry specialists and the opportunity to apply for grants of up to £3,500.

Support can be used for leadership and management, R&D, lean manufacturing, productivity and capacity, quality systems, and supply chain development.