UK Steel investment helps Evolution Valves grow

Evolution Valves, who completed £1m of business in the first month of 2014 alone, are set for further growth with the help of a second investment from UK Steel Enterprise

Peter Cone and Steve Heap of Evolution Valves with Sarah Thorpe
Peter Cone and Steve Heap of Evolution Valves with Sarah Thorpe

A Tees Valley valve company that completed £1m of business in the first month of 2014 alone is set for further growth with the help of a second investment from UK Steel Enterprise.

Evolution Valves, set up four years ago, has already established a world-wide reputation for its customised butterfly valves that meet the high safety and performance standards demanded by heavy industries including the oil and gas, chemical, pharmaceutical, power and marine sectors.

Recent orders have come from the Middle East, North America, South America and Africa, as well as from across Europe, Scotland and the North East itself.

The company’s success has also been boosted by a move to new premises on the St Anns Industrial Estate in Stockton, giving it the factory space it needs to move some of its manufacturing in-house. UK Steel Enterprise, the Tata Steel business support subsidiary, backed Evolution Valves with a loan of £50,000 in 2011.

Now, the company has secured a second financial package of £74,750, made up of a £45,000 loan and a grant of £29,750 from UKSE’s Access to Finance Scheme, set up with backing from the Government’s Regional Growth Fund.

Director Peter Cone, who set up Evolution Valves with fellow director Steve Heap, said: “Since we started we have exceeded all forecasts, trebling our business year on year.

“We believe our success is due largely to the decades of expertise, experience and contacts that we have in this sector. Our expertise means that designs can be produced in days rather than the usual weeks. The grant element of this second UK Steel Enterprise investment has been particularly helpful. This is our first significant grant, as opposed to loans, and we see it as a vote of confidence in Evolution Valves.

“It is not always easy, as a young company, to meet the criteria for financial support but UK Steel Enterprise understands the needs of small and medium-sized businesses and operates accordingly. It has been extremely supportive and the investments are invaluable.”

Sarah Thorpe, regional executive for UK Steel Enterprise, said: “Evolution Valves is a relatively new company with great potential and we are pleased we could help with a second investment package. The management team has a wealth of experience and expertise, the company has an impressive order book and it is establishing a solid reputation both here and abroad.”

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