Fermanagh-based manufacturer RE-KKUR is targeting growth in new markets in 2022 after investing significantly in expanding its product range and upgrading its facilities to enable the recycling of raw polymer materials on site.
First established in 2012, the plastic fabrication company has developed the capability to recycle a wide range of waste polymers which are then used in the manufacturing of its own product range for the building industry.
RE-KKUR is Northern Ireland’s only extruded uPVC plaster bead manufacturer, using recycled industrial plastic materials to design and develop high quality building products for plastering, insulation and exterior protection professionals, including Angle Beads, Stop Beads, Bell Cast Beads, Movement Beads, Mesh Beads and other roofing trims.
In the ten years since it was founded the business has built a customer base in Northern Ireland, Great Britain, the Republic of Ireland and the Netherlands, helped by backing from Whiterock Finance.
The Lisnaskea-based company has secured a total of £575,000 from Whiterock Finance through the Growth Loan Fund I & II, as part of Invest Northern Ireland’s Access to Finance suite of funds, and has expanded from nine employees only a few years ago to 29 staff today and production output to over 10 million metres of product per annum.
To mitigate the decreasing availability of raw materials in the market, the volatility of price and quality of supplies available, the business invested in developing a recycling plant to process its own polymer raw materials, which are then used to manufacture its products.
Further investment in processing end of waste materials (otherwise to be landfilled) has resulted in a new market opportunity for high quality polymer raw material, with sales increased both with local and export customers.
RE-KKUR, under its polymer processing division “Jaguar Polymers,” has become one of Northern Irelands only producers of recycled polymer raw material, RE-KKUR uses 1,500 tonnes of recycled polymer per annum sourced within its facilities in Lisnaskea, and through ongoing investment output will increase to 5,000 tonnes of high grade recyclate per annum by 2024.
Vincent McCoy, Managing Director of RE-KKUR said: “Over the years we have developed an important partnership with the team at Whiterock Finance, who from the outset, recognised the vision we had for RE-KKUR. Given the current shift towards green manufacturing and widespread acknowledgement of the need to recycle and reduce the creation of new virgin plastics globally, we have undertaken various R&D projects to investigate increased use of a wide range of target materials including post-consumer recycled materials, packaging waste and other blended polymers.”
“Using a wide range of recycled polymers to produce our products has helped us manage raw material costs, provided increased supply to underpin growth targets and given us greater ability to mitigate material shortages and price increases. All of these are problems facing other manufacturers and so we believe that this technology provides us with a huge opportunity to sell to new customers in new markets,” he added.
Una Warnock, head of portfolio at Whiterock Finance, which manages Growth Loan Fund I and II, said: “RE-KKUR is a great example of an innovative business which we have backed at numerous stages in its growth journey, with funding helping it at various points to increase production, hire new staff and perhaps most importantly to develop the new process which will enable the company to grow into previously untapped sectors and new geographical markets.” And went to say that, “Recent funding has allowed the company to purchase market leading electrostatic separation equipment to process a pure recycled material to rival virgin polymers.”