Innovative manufacturing is the bedrock for a strong economy

Manufacturing Focus - Coventry & Warwickshire: In Association with Barclays. Pictured: Lontra’s production line in Tyseley, Birmingham
Lontra Production Line in Tyseley, Birmingham

When Steve Lindsey discovered that air compressors absorb a staggering 10 per cent of the world’s energy, and no one had succeeded in making them more efficient for 100 years, he decided to do it himself.

His invention, the Blade Compressor, was a completely new and patented geometry for a machine that is at the core of many industries. It leaks less, uses less energy and is more reliable than traditional machines of this type.

And with the global air compressor market expected to exceed $37 billion by 2022, driven by additional demand from the food & beverage and pharmaceutical sectors, it seemed ideal to launch a new product into a sector ready to embrace potentially costsaving technology.

In 2019, Lontra, the company he set up in 2004 to design, manufacture and sell the compressor, opened a purpose-built advanced manufacturing centre in Napton, in rural Warwickshire.

And last year, the advanced engineering technology company began production of the blade compressor on a new assembly line in Tyseley, Birmingham.

Lontra has secured significant partnerships with major US distributor networks to ensure it can secure a major market presence in North America.

“It is fast growth manufacturing firms such as ours that reflect the sector’s strength in depth to thrive post pandemic”

Steve, CEO of Lontra said: “Beginning production of our first machines for export was a pivotal moment in Lontra’s growth trajectory.

“It is fast growth manufacturing fi rms such as ours that reflect the sector’s strength to thrive post pandemic. Manufacturing and exports create a strong bedrock for the economy, supporting local jobs and highlighting our world-class skills that make us competitive on a global scale.”

Sales of Lontra’s LP2 product are forecast to boost the company’s value to nearly £600 million by 2024. Following refinements to the original design, the company says its compressor is now up to 34 per cent more efficient than competitors

Footer Business_Innovation Banner Ad_980x672

Made in Britain – The value of export opportunities to UK businesses

For information on how Barclays can support your business in the Midlands region contact Rebekah Taitt, Relationship Director, Corporate Banking, Barclays at


A survey of 10,002 consumers in 10 markets was carried out by Opinium on behalf of Barclays Corporate Banking in January 2021. Subsequent economic modelling was completed by Development Economics Ltd