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Univer Steps Up Development Work After Gaining Yorkshire Bank Backing


PLANS TO increase manufacturing capability in Yorkshire are being stepped up by pneumatic industrial automation specialist, Univer Manufacturing Company Ltd, after gaining development funding from Yorkshire Bank.

Univer, part of the global Univer Group, is restructuring its Bradford production facility to increase capacity after gaining funding from Yorkshire Bank’s West Yorkshire Financial Solutions Centre (FSC).

The funding to restructure its production facility, Station Road, follows Univer’s development of the world’s first intelligent electrical clamp as part of its range of products to support industrial automation.

Univer, which was founded in Italy in 1971, has a global reputation for its pneumatic automation products but developed the intelligent electrical clamp after deciding that broadening its portfolio is an important component of its future growth.

Although motor manufacturers have traditionally used pneumatic clamps for work-holding applications, Univer developed its intelligent electrical clamp because increased competition, environmental concerns and the recession means that motor manufacturers are constantly seeking new ways to cut energy costs and introduce higher levels of health and safety.

The new Univer electrical clamp uses a fraction on the energy needed to run a conventional clamp and is also touch-sensitive which increases health and safety as it eliminates the risk of trapping operators.

Univer Manufacturing Ltd managing director, Mike Pix, who has further plans to launch electrical products to complement the new `intelligent clamps’, says:   “Energy efficiency is now a key focal point within the global motor industry and  this is being re-enforced by EU legislation.

“We recognise that, to keep ahead of the field, it is essential that Univer continues to introduce innovative technology. The next challenge for us is to turn our latest designs for electrical linear drives into world beaters but without financial backing this is just a vision and the Yorkshire Bank support will enable us to turn this into reality for Univer and our customers.

“Yorkshire Bank understood our needs but, equally important, also met our tight deadlines when the wider banking world is particularly cautious.  This says a lot for strength of our business and the close working relationship we have developed with Yorkshire Bank during the last 15 years.”

Univer established its only UK base at Bradford 20 years ago and its 17,000 sq ft facility houses the latest CNC production machinery and 3D computerised design, linked directly to manufacturing control systems.

Yorkshire Bank’s West Yorkshire FSC business partner, Jason Middleton, says: “We are very much open to support successful trading businesses. Univer is a highly-regarded manufacturing business and we are pleased to support its latest innovations which are environmental, enhance safety and will help car manufacturing to remain competitive.”

Yorkshire Bank’s West Yorkshire FSC, which also covers Kirklees and Calderdale, comprises 45 staff in multi-discipline teams encompassing corporate banking, private wealth management, treasury services and credit and operates a traditional method of banking with funding from deposits used to support investments in the local community.

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