A North East furniture restoration business is targeting major growth after expanding its premises.
Furniture Clinic recently invested £40,000 at its head office in Burnopfield, increasing floor space from 12,500 to 16,500 sq. ft, installing a mezzanine level and refurbishing the interior, before equipping the department with new spray booths, benches, sewing machines, tools and machinery.
Around £100,000 has also been spent on launching a London office, with costs going on everything from furniture to staff training.
The expansion, which has already enabled the business to take on two new apprentices, will allow it to increase capacity by over 300%.
The company, which also comprises the handbag restoration business Handbag Clinic, now intends to grow its 39-strong headcount by a further eight to ten employees by the end of the year.
Established by Keith Staerck’s a decade ago, Furniture Clinic manufactures a unique range of leather cleaning, repair and restoration products used for everything from furniture to clothing, handbags and luggage.
It uses state-of-the-art technology to develop and test new products, which are then approved by third party test houses to ensure they conform to industry standards.
The products are used by Furniture Clinic technicians before being brought to market.
Mr Straerck’s son Ben has been involved in the business from the start and has now taken over as managing director.
He said: “We’re delighted to announce the opening of our new extended and refurbished premises following this major investment in facilities.
“The increased work space has allowed the combined businesses to increase capacity by over 300%. For Handbag Clinic, this allows more bags to be cleaned, repaired and restored; something which is vital after the success of the London Store.
“For Furniture Clinic, this allows for an increase in office space, production and warehousing, helping the business to cope with rapidly increasing demand and to facilitate expansions into export markets. Thirty per cent of Furniture Clinic’s client base is currently made up of overseas sales, and there is further room for sustained growth.
“We’re confident that our investment in facilities will ensure that we meet, and even exceed, growth targets.”