IDS detects the winning formula

A poineering North-East company working at the cutting edge of medical research has landed another major award.

A poineering North-East company working at the cutting edge of medical research has landed another major award.

Immunodiagnostics Systems Limited (IDS) has been voted top North-East Exporter by the prestigious International Trade Today magazine. The company is now in the running to win the magazine's coveted International Trade Company of the Year Award.

The honour is the latest in a long line of successes for the Boldon-based firm which manufactures medical diagnostic kits for the early detection of bone diseases, such as osteoporosis, and cancer.

Last year the firm, which employs 50 workers, received a Queen's Award for Enterprise in the International Trade category, to add to its Queen's Award for Technological Achievements in 1999. To complete a year of success, managing director Dr Roger Duggan, was voted Business Executive of the Year for Wearside and Durham.

The International Trade Today judges said that IDS's cutting edge product development, robust approach to quality, intelligent and diverse attitude to different overseas markets and commitment to corporate social responsibilities were the qualities that earned them the award.

Accepting the award for IDS, David Bottrill and Jessica Knighton, from the company's export management team, explained how the company has developed from its formation in 1977 as a UK distributor of diagnostic products to become a globally recognised innovator in the In-Vitro Diagnostics (IVD) industry. Exports are a key element of the business, especially to develop markets in the US, Germany, France, Scandinavia and Japan.

Over the past three years IDS has doubled total turnover and more than trebled export sales, which now account for 70% of its business, while nurturing technology development in British universities and research institutes worldwide.

Jessica said: "The keys to international success are excellent products meeting a very clear niche need in the market, first class distributors, regular sales visits to nurture distributors and their staff and a committed workforce. Many of IDS's employees have been with the company since its inception and staff turnover is very low."

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