In 2010 Fortress Technology’s European office took a leap of faith and moved from their 3,000 ft premises, which was the basis of their sales and support network, into a 10,500 ft factory. The purpose of which was to manufacture their range of Phantom metal detectors which they had previously been importing from their parent in Toronto.
The volume of sales made it a viable option and the UK offered several attractions :
- There was a strong sales and technical team already established with Fortress, with a number of years industry experience prior to Fortress being established in Europe (1999).
- Many initiatives for Metal Detection originate in the UK, (performance standards and codes of practice have very often been retailer driven).
- The low labour costs associated with overseas manufacturing may look attractive, but Fortress believed they could and would not be sustained. The UK was far more predictable.
- Product quality would be difficult to control, particularly for Fortress where there are many specials and customer solutions are offered. Whereas the UK has a strong and respected reputation for manufacturing quality and excellence.
Now Fortress Technology (Europe), are proud to be supplying their 1000th detector to Sparc Systems Ltd, the same customer who took delivery of the very first unit to leave their Banbury manufacturing site in January 2011.
Sparc Systems Ltd have been integrating the Phantom, and most recently Stealth, metal detectors into their range of high performance checkweighing systems for a number of years now. Local manufacture has provided both companies with additional benefit of customising products to satisfy unique customer requirements, which could not otherwise be met.
Sarah Ketchin, Managing Director of the European office, stated ”it has been an incredible achievement and full credit goes to the whole team at Banbury who have been incredibly focused and committed to the business.
We are all proud to be supplying a Made in Britain product. It’s sometimes difficult to believe that the company has gone so far in such a short space of time. The next challenge is to see how much more of the product range we can manufacture locally as we still need to import some of our product range in order to satisfy demand”.