An award-winning, Bristol-based business that specialises in the design of eco-friendly laundry products has created new jobs and is exporting to over 30 countries worldwide after bringing its production back to the UK from China.
Ecoegg developed an innovative Dryer Egg product but needed assistance during the design phase and were keen to secure funding to enable it to be manufactured in the UK. The company received support from SWMAS Ltd through the Manufacturing Advisory Service (MAS) programme and the Product Development Centre (PDC).
The company was awarded a grant to fund the design and development of a new injection moulding tool through the PDC project, which is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (2007-2013) Competitiveness Programme.
The grant was used to fund the design and development of a new injection moulding tool that has enabled the Dryer Egg to be produced in the UK rather than in China where it had been previously. MAS provided the company with advice and funding to secure patent registration for the product.
Dawn White, Director at Ecoegg, explained: “Being able to bring our production back to the UK has so many advantages. From a quality control perspective, we are able to see the product being manufactured and meet our suppliers face-to-face with no language barriers to overcome. It has also turned out to be at least as equally cost effective because the price of transportation from China is growing rapidly.
“We have also been able to create three full time jobs and six part time jobs including ongoing work for a warehouse manager (as we now rent our own warehouse in the UK), a logistics manager and our own team of packers.
“A further five jobs have been created indirectly with our UK suppliers and all of these new positions are likely to be worth hundreds of thousands of pounds moving forward. We have also paid manufacturers in the UK over £30k for the design and manufacture of the new plastic injection tool.
“The support received has been fantastic and the MAS and PDC team are brilliant to work with. We are now working on another project and they are helping us in our attempts to link up with some university expertise as we look to develop a new dishwasher product.”
Ecoegg is now exporting to over 30 countries worldwide including Italy, Germany, Brazil and Australia. The company has also just started to break into the US market and has come full circle in that it now sells in to China.
This rapid growth has enabled Ecoegg to expand its operations and open a new warehouse to hold stock. The company is on track to hit sales of £1.5m by the end of its next financial year.