A manufacturer of specialist grinding equipment has won a near-£750,000 order from China that is expected to provide the basis for further export sales into the country.
International Innovative Technologies Ltd (IIT) of Gateshead will supply specialist fine grinding and particle-sizing technology for a new custom-built ceramic tile manufacturing plant in Zibo, China.
The operator of the new plant is Shandong V-tong Science and Technology Ltd (V-tong), a joint venture between Hong Kong-based recycling specialist Vecor and a leading Chinese manufacturer of ceramic tiles.
As part of the supply arrangements made with V-tong, the company will also become the exclusive distributor of IIT’s patented milling equipment for the ceramic tile industry in China.
Tom Wilkinson, founder and chairman of IIT, said: “This is a significant order in its own right, but the distribution partnership we have established with V-tong means that we are now ideally placed to expand our market presence in China.
“V-tong has ambitious growth plans of its own, which we will be supporting with more equipment, and there is also tremendous potential for our system, not only in the Chinese ceramics sector but also for the milling of other raw materials and minerals.
“The ability to showcase our technology in China through our connections with V-tong will be very important in demonstrating the capability of the equipment in other mineral processing, glass recycling and similar applications”
The patented IIT technology is suitable for the low-energy milling of a wide range of natural raw materials, minerals and industrial products.
In China the new plant will use waste fly ash from local coal-fired power stations to produce ceramic tiles in a special dry process that requires close control and accurate reduction of the particle size of the raw materials involved.
Trials carried out in IIT’s Team Valley test plant have proven the ability of the milling system to meet rigorous technical demands of the tile production process and the first equipment will be despatched to China in the next few weeks.
Engineers from V-tong are already being trained on the new system in Gateshead and IIT technical staff will travel to China to supervise its installation and commissioning in the new plant.
Alex Koszo, managing director of Vecor, is spearheading the new plant in China.
He said: “We have investigated various equipment types around the world and have found the best dry milling solution to be the IIT system from the UK.
“The technical capability of the IIT grinding system is not only ideal for our new tile venture, but also has considerable potential applications elsewhere in China and we are very excited by the opportunities that are opening up for new partnership.”
IIT has recently recruited new sales representatives as part of its team of 25 people at its Team Valley factory.
The company is also currently recruiting product and design engineers, and has also recently appointed specialist sales agents for Belgium and Spain/Portugal.
Discussions to make similar overseas sales agency appointments for Australia and Africa are currently taking place as part of the company’s efforts to continue to expand worldwide sales.