Castledawson Company Aims to Grow Its Export Business

Creagh Precision Joinery in Castledawson aims to double sales, boost profits through a focus on business outside Northern Ireland and provide nine new jobs over the next two years with assistance from Invest Northern Ireland.

The company’s expansion plans were announced today by John McElhone, Creagh Precision Joinery Managing Director, and welcomed by Kevin Helferty, Manager of Invest NI’s North West Local Office  (NWLO) in Londonderry.

Creagh Precision designs and manufactures a range of pre-fabricated door-frames in hard and soft wood timbers and MDF for customers in both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

Said Mr McElhone: “We’ve established a strong market position as a supplier of door sets for contractors in the residential, commercial and education sectors, especially in the Republic of Ireland which now accounts for over 70 per cent of our business. We currently offer contractors a complete solution. Doors are pre-finished and hinged to their frames with the specified ironmongery in our factory. Joiners no longer have to hang doors on site.

“This results in significant savings in time and costs for contractors seeking to bring buildings into operation as fast as possible.

“Substantial growth opportunities have been identified in the Republic and we also see encouraging signs of more contractors in Northern Ireland being ready to consider our products.  For example, we’ve provided products recently to projects being carried out by Hagan Homes and to the contractor working at Thornhill College in Derry.

“Invest NI’s guidance and practical support has been immensely important. We’ve been helped to strengthen our management, to improve productivity and develop a marketing strategy for the Republic,” he added.

Mr Helferty said: “Creagh Precision has identified, and is now successfully exploiting, a significant business opportunity arising from the demand from contractors for faster and more cost-effective supply of essential products such as doors.

“The company developed its pre-finished door services following market research in England, where managers spotted a service not then readily available in Ireland.

“The benefits of the project will be a 50 per cent increase in sales turnover by 2007, maintenance of profit margins in the order of twice the sector average, and the creation of nine new jobs.

“The project is central to the company’s long term growth based strategy which involves increasing sales in export markets. “