Uform kitchen supplier creates 40 extra jobs at Toombridge factory

Family-founded Uform’s turnover has climbed to £22m with a staff of 166

Simon Oliphant, managing director of Uform (centre) with Brian Shane (left) and Geoff Sharpe of Danske Bank: Uform distributes 1,000-plus kitchens a week in the UK and Ireland.

Simon Oliphant, managing director of Uform (centre) with Brian Shane (left) and Geoff Sharpe of Danske Bank: Uform distributes 1,000-plus kitchens a week in the UK and Ireland.

 

A Co Derry family-founded kitchen component supplier, which has grown its turnover from just over £8 million (€8.96 million) to £22 million in four years, has created 40 additional jobs as part of its latest expansion project.

Uform, which was founded in 1993 by the Donnelly family, is currently distributing 1,000-plus kitchens a week for retailers in the UK and Ireland.

The firm employs 166 people at its factory in Toombridge but it says it could be set for further expansion thanks to its investments in technology and the close business relationships it has developed with manufacturers in Italy – from where it imports a majority of its materials.

Simon Oliphant, managing director at Uform, said: “Three years ago we started working on a long-term plan to grow the business. We’ve carried out two major factory extensions and invested in two new state-of-the-art paint lines – the technology is a first for our sector in the UK and Ireland.”

Mr Oliphant said the company, despite its exposure to significant currency movements, recently added another 60,000sq ft of factory space.

Turnover target

“We have some additional land surrounding our current facility so we will be looking to further extend the factory and improve our distribution centre. We have also set ourselves a target of reaching a turnover of £34 million by 2019 which we feel is a realistic goal,” Mr Oliphant added.

Uform’s latest company investment project has been backed by Danske Bank, which Mr Oliphant said had also helped the firm manage its euro exposure with its FX risk-management services.

Brian Shane, corporate banking manager at Danske Bank, said the Donnelly family’s decision to reinvest in the business first started by a father and two sons team in 1993 was an important vote of confidence in the factory and for the Toomebridge area.

“The growth of the business in the last four years has been remarkable and shows no signs of slowing down,” Mr Shane added.