Manufacturers are back in the black

Outokumpu's Melt shop on-site at Europa Link
Outokumpu's Melt shop on-site at Europa Link
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Prospects are looking up for the Sheffield region’s leading manufacturers, according to the latest rankings produced by Sheffield University’s Management School and Star Business.

The Sheffield region’s Top 50 Manufacturers have turned an overall loss of £760,000 in 2010 into a total profit of £1.8 million for 2011, despite a 20 per cent fall in sales from £4 billion to £3.2 billion.

Employment at the Top 50 manufacturers also fell – down by 11 per cent from 20,900 in 2010 to 18,655.

Companies at the top of the rankings by turnover remain largely unchanged, with stainless steel producer Outokumpu has leading the field for the third year running.

The Sheffield company once again leads two Doncaster companies – trailer manufacturer Ballyvessey Holdings and the latest incarnation of Polypipe, Hamsard 3054 – while Sheffield-based metals processing equipment specialist Siemens VAI and industrial controls specialist Danaher retain fourth and fifth place.

Sheffield-based Betafence, Bifrangi and Gripple, Rotherham-based Kostal and Doncaster-based Omega have all jumped significantly higher up the main rankings.

Fencing and mesh manufacturer Betafence has boosted turnover from £39 million to £76 million.

And crankshaft manufacturer Bifrangi increased turnover to £48 million from £32 million. Bifrangi also secured a place among the region’s most profitable manufacturers, along with fitted kitchen manufacturer Omega and wire joining, tensioning and suspension system specialist Gripple.

Omega increased turnover from £30 million to £36 million, while Gripple shot up the table, despite its turnover remaining fairly static at around £30 million.

Motor industry supplier Kostal, meanwhile, increased turnover from £32 million to £41 million.

More than half the companies in the Top 50 Manufacturers table are based in the Sheffield postal district.

Doncaster comes next with one in five Top 50 companies, followed by Rotherham, with just over one in 10 top manufacturers in its area.

Chesterfield boasts four top manufacturers and Barnsley, three.