Photography by Harrison Photography
In picture is (left), Vaughan Monroe, Smiley Monroe, Lisburn, with Vicky Kell, Invest NI Trade Director, and Mary Monroe of Smiley Monroe. The Lisburn company has won export business in the West Indies following participation in a quarrying exhibition with Invest Northern Ireland.
Smiley Monroe in Lisburn has won export business in the West Indies that could be worth around £500,000 this year following participation in a quarrying exhibition with Invest Northern Ireland.
Smiley Monroe which manufactures conveyor belts and specialised rubber products for the crushing, screening and recycling sectors, has secured the contract to supply conveyor belting and screening media to a leading distributor in Trinidad and Tobago. In June last year, the company participated in the Hillhead quarrying equipment exhibition in Derbyshire on the Invest NI stand.
The contract was announced by Vaughan Monroe, Smiley Monroe Managing Director, and welcomed by Dr Vicky Kell, Invest NI Trade Director.
Mr Monroe, commenting on the new contract, said: “We were introduced to this new distributor from Trinidad and Tobago when they visited us at Hillhead, where they were impressed by the quality, prices and range of our products and services on show for bulk materials handling.
“They placed their first large order soon after the exhibition and we are currently supplying rolls of conveyor belting, including specialised belts, and our market leading synthetic screening media.
“Although a small market of just 1.3 million people, large reserves of oil and natural gas make Trinidad and Tobago among the wealthiest in the Caribbean. Extensive investment is underway to strengthen its transport infrastructure to help increase tourism revenue.
“In addition, the nation is an ideal springboard to the much larger markets of south and central America, markets in which our new distributor has an established network. We see opportunities, therefore, to extend our business to these important markets.”
Smiley Monroe, which employs 80 people at its state-of-the-art manufacturing base in Knockmore Hill Industrial Estate, is also among 11 local businesses which will be part of an Invest NI stand at the forthcoming Conexpo Exhibition in Las Vegas. A further 20 local companies will either be visiting the show or will have their own stands at the event.
“Taking part in Conexpo will enable us to continue our discussions with this distributor and other potential business contacts. Like Hillhead, Conexpo is a must attend event for our industry. It will generate good business leads for us to follow up,” added Mr Monroe.
Dr Kell said: “Our presence at major events such as Hillhead and Conexpo is part of our strategy to assist companies in construction related industries to explore and develop new business opportunities worldwide.
“This latest success by Smiley Monroe, a company with a global vision, demonstrates what can be achieved in global markets by businesses prepared to commit the necessary time and resources. We’ve been immensely encouraged by the achievements of Smiley Monroe and other companies in dynamic markets such as India. There’s good business abroad for construction sector companies prepared to grasp the opportunities provided by our Trade programme,” added Dr Kell.