50th anniversary is a stamp of quality for Batten & Allen

Promotional Business Feature: Batten & Allen
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Batten & Allen, a leading designer and manufacturer of high-quality precision stampings and metal pressings, is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year.

Boasting fifty years of rich experience, Batten & Allen was established in 1972 by Alan Batten and Les Allen. It now employs more than 115 people at its Cirencester head office and sells in excess of £16 million a year, supplying precision manufactured products primarily for the electronics industry.

The company undertakes precision stamping, plating and assembly, but perhaps the most impressive fact about Batten & Allen is that it produces around six billion items a year. That’s 20 million a day, 500 million a month – all from its Cirencester facility.

Since 2020 the company has achieved record turnover,. With a global client base, across America, Europe, Central and South America, the Far East, South Africa and Australasia, Batten & Allen exports 85% of its metal stampings.

The company still retains its family ethos and Alan’s son, Shawn, is Chairman of the company.  As part of Shawn’s plans to grow the company, 4 years ago he brought in an external CEO – Ian Mackinnon – to lead and develop the business.

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Shawn Batten said “I am looking forward to the new Board of Directors driving things forward and developing a strong and exciting business based on the robust foundations developed over the last 50 years”.’

Batten & Allen has achieved success by offering technical solutions to its customers including design assistance, prototyping, high speed production, full testing of products using the latest laser technology and customer end-use testing. It offers customers turnkey solutions including assistance in final assembly.

Ian Mackinnon said “We have been able to deploy and develop our core skills to many new customer applications over the last 4 years and this has enabled us to significantly increase new business wins both in the UK and internationally. By concentrating on developing our core skills, we expect to further increase our rate of growth in the future”

Looking to the future…

Batten & Allen has always continued to invest in the future. This has included a major commitment to capital investment, with around £1 million a year, over recent years and Covid-19 didn’t halt that commitment. During the pandemic, the business invested in a new high technology plating line and two new state-of-the art milling machines.

Investment commitments in the next few months include a CNC grinding machine a new high end stamping press and a further high specification plating line. The business recognises that when you’re selling precision parts, having the right, state-of-the-art equipment is key.

Deploying the latest equipment means the company can consistently improve efficiencies and its engineers can work to even tighter tolerances. Its latest equipment can measure to a micron (one-thousandth of a millimetre), and, in the case of electroplating, to much less than a micron.

Batten & Allen undertakes a substantial amount of research and development, particularly in the plating process department, the part of the manufacturing process where its engineers interact with customers most. Batten & Allen’s team of engineers not only undertake product development but get involved in problem solving for customers too.

The company is always trying to automate and improve, and customers return to Batten & Allen because it consistently manufactures high quality parts with great attention to detail. With an unrivalled focus on engineering reliability, Batten & Allen insist on providing a responsive and efficient service by having a true understanding of customers’ needs.

With a world class quality management system supported by the very latest tooling, measurement and production technology, this helps ensure the required accuracy is always met, along with customers environmental requirements.

Sales Director David Merchant explains “the investment we are undertaking in equipment, technology and people increases our competitive advantage resulting in finding new customers in the ever-expanding electronics market.”

It’s all about the people

Batten & Allen understand better than most that it’s the people that work in the business which make the biggest contribution to its ongoing success.

The company values workforce continuity as very important in maintaining and developing its skills base. Batten & Allen has many long-service employees, for example, one employee, Brian Cooper, has achieved an toolroom and, in his spare time, supporting his local football team in nearby Poulton.

While the Covid-19 pandemic affected the wider population, Batten & Allen continued throughout.

Around 70 per cent of its staff live in, or close to Cirencester, and more than half are engineers, with the rest undertaking essential critical support roles that keeps the company successful.

However, Batten & Allen also knows that a successful future lies in the hands of the next generation, and it actively supports apprenticeships. In fact, two of its four Board members are former apprentices, and they recognise that offering apprenticeships is key to its ongoing and future success.

In 2022, the company is planning to work more closely with local schools, boosting its work experience opportunities and running open days to welcome the local community into the business.

For CEO Ian Mackinnon and Finance Director David Legg, it’s all about ensuring we maintain a team of well trained, enthusiastic and motivated people who are willing to go the extra mile in continuing the development of the company and ensuring we can look automotive and aerospace. The process offers a high degree of design flexibility to meet tight tolerances and unique incredible 43 years of service working in the forward positively to the next 50 years.

batten-allen.com

What is precision stamping?

Precision metal stamping is a widely used manufacturing process which enables the fast and cost-e­fficient production of a wide variety of precision metal parts needed in many products and industries.  Batten & Allen specialises in progression stamping which is a multistage stamping operation. There is a growing demand for precision metal parts across many industries, from medical to configurations.

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