Precision plastic injection moulding firm Icon Plastics has won a £500,000 contract to develop and manufacture the casings for an energy meter against stiff national competition.
NetThings commissioned Icon, based in Eaglescliffe, to develop the tooling requirements for an enclosure for the meter, which is aimed at the new house-build and commercial property markets.
NetThings vice president Stuart Johnstone – pictured (above) with Phil Walker and Gareth Thomas from Icon Plastics – said: “We visited several companies around the country and Icon stood out head and shoulders in terms of engagement, the thought-process and enthusiasm for the product.
“It then came down to a commercial decision and Icon was very competitive.”
Edinburgh-based NetThings is a team of software developers, engineers, and technologists dedicated to developing web-connected devices that monitor power consumption to show where savings can be made.
Icon has developed and is manufacturing the plastic casing for the energy monitoring system, which is for all utility types, including heat and water. Icon’s input involved advising NetThings on what the possibilities were and the best materials to use.
Mr Johnstone added: “The work that Icon did was fantastic from the very early stages and all that needed to be fine-tuned was the surface finishes. It had the right feel all the way through the process and Icon helped every step of the way.”
Icon MD Thomas added: “This is a prime example of the collaborative way that Icon works with clients to ensure that our customers’ needs are met in an efficient, timely and cost-effective manner.”
There are plans to extend the target market of the meter, which is worth two code credits under the Code for Sustainable Homes, to small and medium-sized enterprises.
Icon Plastics, which has invested £1m since it moved to new premises at Durham Lane Industrial Park in 2014, has customers in a range of sectors including electronics, agricultural, healthcare and medical, construction, defence and automotive,
It operates around the clock five days a week and has 24 moulding machines. While Icon’s marketplace is predominantly the UK, it does some business overseas, and exports to Malaysia, Austria, and Eastern Europe. Its clients include Veolia group, and Sepura.