MANAGEMENT buyouts can be notoriously difficult and lead companies into uncharted business Waters where the future is no longer certain.

Not so with Siddall and Hilton Products which has posted financial results for its first year since the MBO that are leading to new investment and a focus on the perimeter protection market with increased production capability.

‘We are more than happy with how things have gone and we are excited about the future,’ said Ian Thurley, chief executive at S&H. ‘We are stronger than ever and we are moving forward.’

Profits at the Yorkshire company are up and a £2.5million investment in new machinery will create more jobs and significantly increase production.

‘It is the first time in 12 years that we’ve been able to talk about investment at this company and really it’s a remarkable achievement as it comes just 17 months after the buyout.’

The Austrian built EVG machine should be operational by the late Spring of this year and will be able to run 40 per cent faster than any of the four machines it currently has on Brighouse site.

‘Not only that, but it also means that downtime on changeover to different wire configurations is cut and that makes it far more efficient. We really see it making a difference to our capability and consolidating our position as the UK’s number one producer of mesh panels.’

The strengthening of the company’s financial foundations has come through efficiency savings, improved working capital management and the decision to opt out of the production of furniture springs. While this led to Siddall and Hilton losing £470,000 in turnover, it increased profits.

‘It meant we have no distractions,’ said Thurley, ‘with two-thirds of our production concentrated on panels for the perimeter protection industry both here in the UK and throughout Europe.’

No redundancies have been made since the buyout and while the machinery investment may take the headlines, the company is actively engaged in increasing its 50-strong workforce, both in sales and production.

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