Invest NI helps local firm turn up the heat in export markets

Mar 06, 2007

Invest Northern Ireland has helped a Tyrone-based heating systems specialist to develop an innovative new climate control system, which has secured major export contracts worth over £300,000 in just 6 months.

MAGMA Heat Ltd, based in Cookstown, developed a unique thermostatic climate control system – now the most advanced available in the UK/Europe - with R&D assistance from Invest Northern Ireland.

The climate controller was designed by MAGMA Heat Ltd’s Managing Director, Dermot McLaughlin, a plumbing and heating specialist with over 25 years experience. MAGMA Heat Ltd was established in 1990 and is now one of the leading providers of underfloor heating systems in throughout Ireland.

‘’MAGMA Heat Ltd delivers high quality, user friendly, efficient and economical, heating solutions.  However, we increasingly found that existing technology could not deliver thermostatic climate control at the level expected by our customers.” says Dermot McLaughlin.

I realised that if I had difficulty in finding suitable thermostatic climate control products, that there was a gap in the market and I therefore engaged with Invest NI and its Compete programme, so I could use R&D to exploit that opportunity.”

The project took 18 months, from the initial concept, prototype development, testing and product refinement, and now MAGMA Heat Ltd has developed one of the most advanced control systems for underfloor heating available on the market today.

“Developing this new thermostatic climate control system has strengthened our position in key export markets. Since we launched the new product six months ago, demand for it and our range of underfloor heating solutions has led to more than £300,000 of new orders. R&D has made a huge difference to MAGMA Heat Ltd and it will continue to be part of our future growth plans.”

Tracy Meharg, Invest NI’s Managing Director of Innovation and Capability Development said:

“Invest NI is committed to driving the innovation agenda and helping client companies to engage in and reap the benefits of R&D.

“Any local business that doubts the benefits of well planned and well executed R&D should look to MAGMA Heat Ltd to see how innovation leadership can drive business success.

“Only by prioritising R&D, innovation and design can businesses differentiate products, processes and services from their competitors, and enjoy sustainable growth in sales and profits.”

Invest NI’s Compete programme helps companies to develop innovative market-led products, services and processes and is currently seeking applications from local businesses. For information on the programme and eligibility, please contact Andy Reilly on 028 9069 8765 or visit

For more information on MAGMA products visit, e-mail or call 028 8676 2931.  

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