Funding helps AET to be at the cutting edge

Andrew Richards, operations director at AET, with Sarah Gwynne, asset finance sales manager in Yorkshire Bank's Working Capital Solutions team
Andrew Richards, operations director at AET, with Sarah Gwynne, asset finance sales manager in Yorkshire Bank's Working Capital Solutions team
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A YORKSHIRE engineering firm is gearing up for growth after buying hi-tech machinery, thanks to a £900,000 funding package from Yorkshire Bank.

Sheffield based Advanced Engineering Techniques (AET) has taken delivery of a laser-cutting system that will help it stay ahead of the competition.

The BySprint Fiber 4020 operates up to three times faster than the firm’s previous laser-cutter and uses 60 per cent less energy. It can also operate unmanned during the night. The firm invested in the equipment after obtaining a funding package from Yorkshire’s Bank’s South Yorkshire Business and Private Banking Centre.

Founded in 1989, AET manufactures parts for the rail, construction, yellow goods and road transport sectors.

It generated a turnover of £11.5m in the last financial year, and employs 170 staff.

AET has spent around £6m on new equipment over the past five years, and the investment has helped to create jobs at its Sheffield plant.

David Birch, the managing director of AET, said: “With support from Yorkshire Bank, we have invested in new automated laser-cutting equipment that will enable us to scale up production and operate around the clock.

“At 16m long, it is a big piece of equipment and will be used to make parts for yellow goods, buses and coaches and the road transport industry.

“This investment will help us remain competitive against our rivals overseas and retain jobs in Yorkshire.

“Since 2010, we’ve created an extra 70 jobs and now have 170 staff.

“Investing in equipment will help us to continue growing. The more contracts we win, the more people we can employ.”

The machine was delivered to AET’s fabrication facility on four 40ft trailers. It has now been fully assembled and installed.

Kevin Elliott, the head of Yorkshire Bank’s South Yorkshire business and private banking centre, said yesterday: “We are extremely proud to support AET, a strong, well-managed business with significant growth ambitions.

“David and his team represent all that is good and entrepreneurial about the Yorkshire economy.”