A Middlesbrough-based glass manufacturer is celebrating encouraging export growth.
WRL Glass Media, part of the Ward Recycling Group, is on track to achieve exports of 40% this financial year, a step closer to its long-term ambitions for continental expansion.
The specialist manufacturer of recycled glass products, which last year exported around 30% of its produce, has already exported 4,000 tonnes in the financial year beginning 1 February 2016, an increase of 1800 tonnes since the same time last year.
The figure puts WRL Glass Media well on track to meet its target of 40% exports this year.
The export boost comes as demand from European markets for its products continues to grow.
WRL’s European exports are principally in shot-blasting products – customers are swapping from grit or plastic products to environmentally-friendly recycled glass for the first time; and more refined processed glass, which is used as a cost-effective and cleaner replacement for silica sand in swimming pool filtration systems.
Ward Recycling was founded in 2002 as a small, kerbside recycling firm in the North East.
It has grown significantly, and including WRL Glass Media, now employs 146 people and has a turnover in excess of £8m.
Continued growth in exports is part of WRL Glass Media’s longer-term strategy, to expand into continental Europe, extending its reach as the premier supplier of recycled glass media in the UK and Europe.
Manager Gareth Godwin (pictured above) said: “The international demand for the innovative recycled glass products we produce at South Bank, continues to grow.
“Our customer-base across Europe is receptive to the quality and environmental benefits of utilising glass media in their operations – driving demand and investment in our plant.”
“The long-term ambition of Ward Recycling is to expand our operations to mainland Europe, enabling us to better service and respond to the pressures and demands of the international market.
“The promising start we’ve made on exports this year brings our ambition another step closer.”