Uni funding helps Derbyshire engineers up competitiveness

Uni funding helps Derbyshire engineers up competitiveness
Joe Needham

Chesterfield engineering company N&R Needham is investing in new machinery to boost its measuring capacity after securing funds from the University of Derby.

The investment – totalling £52,424 – will allow the engineering company to boost its competitiveness by plugging its technical gap.

Prior to their funding application, N&R Needham used traditional manual measuring tools that restricted the scope of supply therefore reducing competitiveness.

The company acknowledged the technical gap they had which led them to make two applications to the Invest to Grow fund from the University.

The initial funding was used to purchase and install a CNC Coordinate Measuring Machine that accurately measures components. The machine is essential during production as it can meet high-tech, complex measurement requirements that could not possibly be reached manually.

Eight months later, N&R Needham received further Invest to Grow funding that was used to purchase and install a CNC Turning Centre Machine, and also provided training for current employees.

Joe Needham, Managing Director at N&R Needham, said: “We’ve been able to accept orders that we wouldn’t have been able to take previously.

“The results are that we have a growth in revenue and profitability that wouldn’t have been delivered without the funding”

The Invest to Grow funding has enabled the business to create three new jobs with the prospect of employing a further three as well as expanding its internal research and development activities.

Due to increased quality and complexity of work, the firm has opened up its products to new markets and sectors such as automotive, oil and gas.