A £250,000 investment in new technology at a Ryedale manufacturer means they have been able to increase their capacity by 400 per cent.

Pickering-based Contract Production Ltd make a range of sub-contract electronic products and printed circuit board assemblies for a wide variety of industries. This can be one-off prototypes, up to volumes in their 10,000’s. A recent investment and installation of an AM100 Panasonic Pick and Place line has enabled the company to increase its output by 400 per cent.

The new production line populates printed circuit boards and can place 30,000 components per hour, blowing away previous capacity limits.

Managing Director Simon Norris, said: “This essentially, means that we now measure productivity in seconds not minutes.

“Thanks to the new production line we have added an extra 30-40 weeks of working capacity to the business annually; In time, that could see our work force go from 20 employees to around 50-60 which will be great news for the area.”

The new pick and place machine was manufactured in the Far East and shipped to the manufacturing base in Pickering at the end of 2017. The system has effectively streamlined the company’s whole process, taking a bare printed circuit board, populating it and producing an inspected product at the end of the line.

Mr Norris said: “Obviously, the speed depends on the complexity of the circuit board or product we are producing.

“There has been a lot of talk about the UK’s stagnating productivity levels but this investment into Contract Productions shows there is opportunity and we can now deliver on much larger orders with improved turnaround for our customers that we could only dream of a few weeks ago. It is a major leap forward technology-wise and we are all very excited about the possibilities this brings for the business and our customers.”

As well as the larger orders going into the hundreds of thousands the firm also produces one-off prototypes - often hand-placed - for new products yet to go to market. These can be anything that requires circuit boards, from GPS tracking devices to wind turbines, cameras to measuring instrumentation for deep sea oil drilling rigs.