Its job supplying two consortiums involved in the emergency effort will see the West Midlands-based designer and manufacturer make more than 50,000 cable harnesses. Dedicated production teams and cells that it has set up will deliver the electrical assemblies in short lead times, the first as early as next week. “We have the skills and capacity so immediately added our name to the list when the call to help went out,” says chief executive Tony Hague.
“We have been getting our factory ready to support the NHS for a number of weeks and we’re proud to now be playing our role in helping frontline workers.
“Our staff have been fantastic and are committed to providing crucial assemblies for two different types of ventilator that will undoubtedly save lives.”
Few outside the world of business will have heard of PP C&A, though its work in sectors from food processing and medical to power generation and printing has made possible a multitude of functions possible.
A maker of entire machines as well as parts, tools and control systems for other ones, these variously ensure cows are milked, sticky labels go on fruit, mobiles have a waterproof coating and packets are filled with crisps.
The company has been supplying manufacturing services since 1967, but following growth and then investment in 2018 from Canadian private equity firm Ardenton, turnover now stands £26 million and the workforce at 230.
“We don’t simply sell product, we design solutions so we can identify value at the earliest stage,” says Hague.
“Our customers are predominantly UK but the machines we build will be used all over the world.”
With £2 million invested in automation and three factory extensions creating an extra 40,000 square feet, PP C&A also recently set up a £100,000 electrostatic discharge area for more complex builds.
“This could lead to £2million of new works,” reckons Hague, a social media convert – especially to LinkedIn – who thinks increased awareness of the company via the channels has gained it a further £2million.
A founder member in 2003 of the Manufacturing Assembly Network (MAN), a collective of nine makers and three associates, the group enables strength through by being able to offer every engineering discipline imaginable.
Having weathered recession and Brexit uncertainties, the current turbulence is nonetheless “off the scale and we thought we had seen everything,” adds Hague.
Plans for further acquisitions and setting up additional manufacturing in North America however remain in place.