Sunderland's KK Fabrications plans expansion and new jobs
An expanding Sunderland fabrication company is planning to add to its workforce and relocate into larger premises as it ramps up to meet demand for its services.
KK Fabrications was set up by Kenny Kearvell and Kevin McCourt just over a year ago and works with a range of clients across a wide cross-section of sectors, mainly in the North East.
Its specialities include fabricating conveyors for businesses ranging from food and pharmaceutical to recycling and warehousing, and creating bespoke metalwork staircases and balustrades for commercial and residential developments.
The business designs and fabricates one-off products to meet customers' individual needs and also carries out equipment repairs and maintenance at clients' own sites.
Now the Pattinson South Industrial Estate firm is planning to add two more staff to the current three-strong workforce and has already started thinking about moving to larger premises to handle its growing client list.
KK Fabrications is the first foray into business for co-directors Kevin McCourt and Kenny Kearvell, who were both employed as sheet metal workers at a company based in the Team Valley. When the Gateshead company's owner retired, they decided to set up on their own.
Kevin McCourt said: "Our very first job was to design and manufacture a food processing machine for a Gateshead based company with limited resources and machinery to hand.
"We started fabricating conveyors and food industry products and now we will manufacture basically anything the customer asks for. We also carry out onsite maintenance, so if customers have any problems with their equipment, we have the ability to undertake repairs of this nature."
The business has been investing heavily in new equipment, and has been advised by Sunderland City Council's business investment team. But ramping up its on-site capabilities means that KK is outgrowing its current factory and will soon be looking for new premises.
Mr McCourt said: "We originally took the factory on because of its size and its cost, but now the new machines are taking up available space so we will need bigger premises soon.
"We will speak to the City Council when we are ready to move. They have already helped us and their advice has been second to none. Neither of us has run a business before, so we are both still learning."
Sunderland City Council Deputy Leader, Councillor Harry Trueman, said: "We're proud to have played a part in helping KK Fabrications to establish itself and to work alongside them so the company can grow.
"The City Council's business investment team is able to help ambitious new manufacturing and engineering firms establish themselves, both with advice and guidance on property, equipment and sources of funding. We are also able to support expanding companies to find new markets and promote themselves to new customers, as KK Fabrications are doing, quickly and successfully."