A ‘Can Do’ approach that’s food for thought

Stockton Machine Company, Royce Avenue, Billingham

Yes we can! That’s the philosophy that’s helping a long-established North-East engineering business enjoy a boom period.

Specialising in bespoke rapid turnaround engineering solutions, Stockton Machine Company (SMC) pride themselves in tackling the jobs their rivals won’t or can’t do.

It’s a “can do” attitude that’s seen a company that traditionally supplies many of the region’s leading food processing firms getting its teeth into new industries.

Investments in new hi-tech machinery have helped SMC grasp new opportunities beyond the Billingham firm’s traditional customer base within the food processing industry.

SMC have grasped new work within the offshore renewables sector and the oil and gas industries.

Now in its 44th year, the company has also sealed new customers within the food processing industry it has served since the early 1980s.

From its 6,000 sq ft factory, SMC’s 14-strong team manufacture and supply automated components such as rollers, shafts and gearboxes for food manufacturers producing such delicacies as naan bread, wraps and crisps.

But managing director Mark Smith explains: “We’re winning business in a wide range of sectors because of our willingness to take on high-pressure jobs that others won’t touch.

“We’re regularly told that other firms won’t touch a job because there’s a tight deadline on it. Well, we specialise in rapid turnarounds because we appreciate that’s what our customers want.

“Thanks to the hard work of a loyal and talented workforce, we’re stealing a march on others via our service offering of always being ready to meet tight lead times.

“The business has grown up through the food processing industry. It has always been our mainstay – our bread and butter, if you like! – but the oil and gas industry is now coming up at speed, while wind farms and the renewables sector generally is also growing steadily.”

Since the advent of CNC machines (computer numerical control), SMC has moved up several gears in terms of the complexity of jobs they can handle.

They recently invested in the latest computer-aided machining software, Delcam, and a new vertical machining centre. Coupled with the new software, this means SMC can produce almost anything in a fraction of time it once took.


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