Sylatech reaches for the sky after securing work with global giants

A YORKSHIRE manufacturing firm is set to record a 20 per cent increase in turnover this year as it secures more work with global giants in the space and defence markets.

An Airbus A350. Airbus is one of Sylatech's prime customers.  Photo: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire
An Airbus A350. Airbus is one of Sylatech's prime customers. Photo: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Sylatech, which is based in Kirkbymoorside, is due to open a new microwave production facility later this week which will help to bring skilled jobs to rural North Yorkshire.

The company has also undertaken a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) with the University of York to develop a medical imaging system, which it plans to progress to clinical trials in the next nine months.

Sylatech has embarked on a growth plan to develop its core business by a minimum of £1m per annum for the next five years, which equates to around 15 per cent year-on-year growth.

Turnover in the year ended March 31 2018 was £7.1m and Gordon Gunn, the firm’s commercial director, said he expected further growth of around 20 per cent this year.

Mr Gunn said: “Sylatech needed significant co-operation with its customers. Sylatech won a 10-year contract worth £13.2m with SAAB, for antenna boards for their AMB Giraffe product range.

“A firm strategic alliance has now been formed with our Swedish colleagues from SAAB.

“On the back of this contract, Sylatech had an immediate demand to increase production capacity and this included infrastructure as well as people.”

The new microwave production facility is due to be officially opened on May 23 by Hans Larsson of SAAB.

Sylatech has a number of global clients in the aerospace, space and defence markets with customers including Airbus, Rockwell Collins, Thales and Cobham.

Mr Gunn added: “This month we have been awarded a £1.4m contract to supply lightweight components to a customer in the US for satellites, and we are also securing a £1m deal to supply parts to a new aerospace customer.”

The company started this financial year with 123 staff and it has recruited a further six staff in recent weeks. It plans to hire a further 10 staff during this financial year.

Mr Gunn said that firms based in rural settings, like Sylatech, often faced challenges when recruiting skilled staff.

He added: “Several months ago, however, we kick-started an internal initiative to make Sylatech a great place to work.

“Working closely with our staff, we changed shift patterns, have undertaken targeted investments and created a series of initiatives that attracts people to work here.”

Operating from North Yorkshire, Sylatech has a global customer base across multiple business sectors including aerospace, space, defence, medical, automotive and construction.

Sylatech was founded in 1964 as Micro Metalsmiths.

The Kirkbymoorside-based business also delivers radio frequency microwave systems and investment casting services.

Its customer base covers all tiers of the manufacturing supply chain. It plans further expansion of its site to meet demand.