Gripsure manufacture and supply a wide range of non-slip decking products from their facility in Cornwall.  

The business has grown steadily over the years and, thanks to an increase in DIY projects during the UK lockdown, they saw a large uplift in demand during the summer months, despite challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. To ensure the company can continue to thrive, it has progressed plans for facilities under licence in Japan, and a further plant in France to operate as a separate subsidiary.

SWMAS has a long-standing relationship with Gripsure and was delighted to be able to offer support at this critical stage of their growth plan, funded by ERDF through the Cornwall Manufacturing Advisory Programme (CMAP).

The Challenge: 

Over several years, Gripsure had developed both the automation equipment and process approach to producing high quality, non-slip decking. This equipment, and the process, now had to be duplicated and sent overseas to enable both sites to start production. Process methods had to be captured and documented, and all machinery replicated, to allow easy duplication and adoption in the overseas facility.

How SWMAS helped:

A SWMAS manufacturing specialist helped develop a range of Standard Operating Procedures (SOP’s) to capture vital information, such as specialist process steps, quality requirements, and any specific health and safety procedures. Given the potential language barriers, these documents were visually based, clear, and easy to follow. In addition, SWMAS worked with Gripsure to review their current automation equipment and highlight the areas which were critical to ensuring high-quality products. A range of design improvements was then identified and implemented into two new machines for use at the overseas plants.

The Result:

The SOP’s and machinery design improvements gave the business confidence that their unique process could be transferred overseas and, when installed, would produce the same high-quality products as at their site in Cornwall. This avoided possible delays and unnecessary expense, allowing the business to keep to the critical timeframes needed. Through this support, SWMAS also helped to identify additional productivity improvements, and are now working with Gripsure to further enhance operations and support new product development.

We have worked with the team at Gripsure for many years and it’s been fantastic to play such an active role in their growth. By systematically capturing their unique processes, and identifying improvements to their production equipment, we have been able to develop the Gripsure ‘Blueprint’. This enables their product to be made to their exacting standards across the globe. We look forward to further supporting this company through innovation and new product development as they continue to grow.

Paul Gilbert , Manufacturing Specialist

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Fully-funded business development support and grants are available to small and medium-sized manufacturing companies across the South West - read more here.