Stokesley-based business, Labman, which specialises in the creation of custom robotic automation, is on a winning streak, with a place secured in the final of the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) Awards the creation of 30 new jobs and its largest ever contract win.
The new contract, worth a combined £6.5m, is part of a joint initiative between Labman, the company’s long-standing client Unilever, and Liverpool University. The first part of the contract will be the creation of the £2.5m Formulation Engine for the University’s brand new £68m Materials Innovation Factory.
Jamie Marsay, senior manager at Labman said, “We have been growing at a tremendous rate over the past five years, and the trend is continuing with the awarding of new contracts from all over the globe. Our client base includes some of the world’s leading businesses, who need our bespoke service to meet their automation requirements, from physical machinery through to software and analysis systems. I believe our niche skills are unique, not just to the UK, but globally.
“We are delighted to be going to the BCC awards with the North East England Chamber of Commerce as it gives us a perfect opportunity to raise our profile and showcase the full extent of our services.”
Ross Smith, director of policy, North East England Chamber of Commerce said, “We are delighted to be taking Labman to the BCC awards in November. This company is absolutely outstanding in its field, with growth potential that will be the envy of many. We wish them the best of luck in the final.”
The projects Labman has delivered are extremely diverse, ranging from a bumble-bee flight simulator, to vial filling robots and an, award-winning, novel system to assist in the collection of eggs during IVF. Established over 35 years ago, the company has accumulated a wealth of knowledge and expertise from a huge number of industries, allowing Labman to cater to almost any client requirement.
Due to its growth, turnover is projected to double to £4.6m in 2016, and an extension to the building, doubling the size of the purpose-built HQ, is currently under construction and due to be completed this winter.
It is the company’s approach to staff recruitment that has been the subject of so much recognition by the BCC, as it puts people, and creating an innovative and empowering working environment, at the heart of what it does. Labman has made it a key policy and working practice to recruit apprentices and to give them leadership responsibility at an early stage of their career. To this end, the company forges close links with local schools and colleges. They also place emphasis on attracting talented people, based on their skills, and not always into specific roles, as they prefer to identify where they would be most effective – rather than having to work to narrow job specifications.
Another big part of the company’s ethos is to make the workplace fun. Their HQ has fireman’s poles to get between floors, a climbing wall and a go-kart track on site, and the new extension will also house a squash court!