A Midlands-based interior fit-out specialist has invested around £1 million to ensure customers have the perfect finish.
EE Smith Contracts, based in Leicester, work on hotel, commercial and residential projects mostly in London, manufacturing, supplying and fitting bespoke joinery and carrying out full interior fit outs.
Now the company, which was founded in 1897, has invested in a new spray and polishing shop at its headquarters on the Clarendon Industrial Estate.
The new complex has doubled the firm’s capacity in painting and lacquering and will also allow it to take on more apprentices and trainees in that part of the business.
And some of the first work to come through the new facility will stay in the building as part of a boardroom and client experience centre designed to highlight the company’s work.
Neil Bottrill, Managing Director of EE Smith, said the investment was already producing an impact across the business which employs more than 350 staff across nine sites in the city.
“We had wanted to expand our spray and polishing shop but we were restricted for space,” he said.
“Fortunately, we have taken on an adjacent unit which had become vacant and invested in 10 new spray booths which allows us to really up our capacity and increase efficiencies.
“Not only can we increase the throughput of the unit, but it also means that we can train more youngsters in what is a highly specialised skill and that will bring us added continuity. It also now frees up space for us to expand other departments.
“It is a vital part of our operation, nearly everything we produce goes through the unit and that is the last process before the items are dispatched. The market we are in demands the highest standards possible, and therefore the finish to our products is of paramount importance.”
Bottrill added: “We are obviously judged on a number of criteria such as pricing and our track record, but our customers and potential customers love to see first hand the skills we have here in Leicester and the level of craftsmanship that goes into producing that work.
“The new experience centre and boardroom will allow us to showcase that work perfectly and, we believe, will help us win further work. We have created a new 16 seat boardroom table which has just been finished in the spray and polishing shop, and that will be the show piece of the new centre.”
The firm was subject of a management buyout in 2016, with Bottrill and long-serving colleagues John Richardson, Richard Hollingsworth and Dan Cashmore buying control of the company.