1.Please provide a company background including when it was established, where it is located, how many staff you employ etc.
In 2012 Guttridge will be celebrating it’s 50th anniversary! Guttridge was founded in 1962 by Dr David Guttridge to manufacture and operate mobile animal feed mills. The company gradually began to concentrate more on the design and manufacture of bulk materials handling machinery and now employs approximately 90 people, based in Spalding, Lincolnshire. Guttridge is still family owned by Peter Guttridge, Chairman.
In 2004, Guttridge acquired the intellectual property of Carier Bulk Materials Handling Ltd. All the Carier range has now benefitted from the Guttridge design process and has been re-introduced back into the marketplace.
2.Please provide an overview of the products and services offered and areas of specialisation.
A wealth of experience built up over 50 years enables Guttridge to offer sound, up-to-date advice to assist customers in their choice of machine. Bulk materials handling equipment designed and manufactured on site including:
Screw conveyors (including centreless screws), Belt conveyors, Bucket elevators, Vertical blenders and live bins, Mobile loading hoppers to name a few.
These machines are all available as standard or with various extra features and options. Guttridge also specialise in the design and manufacture of bespoke machines specified precisely for customers’ individual requirements.
Guttridge also has the service Carier Care which is now being rolled out across the UK. Carier Care provides an installation, commissioning and maintenance service of all bulk materials handling equipment using service engineers with the experience, expertise and knowledge to keep customers’ equipment running smoothly and minimise downtime.
In addition, Guttridge Services is the second side to the business and provides a sub-contract laser-cutting, pressing and fabrication service to companies ranging from those requiring simple laser cutting to those that require the complete contact manufacturing service.
3.How did you find out about emita and what benefits do you find the most valuable?
We found out about Emita through UKTI. Emita provide us with valuable information about export support & events which otherwise we do not have the time or resource to find out about. The seminars provide good networking opportunities and an opportunity to network with like minded businesses who have similar challenges, which otherwise you probably would not meet.
4.How long has your company been active in the export / import market and which countries do you currently trade with?
Our company has exported conveying equipment for over 30 years, attending trade shows in a very diverse range of countries at different times. The countries of the Former Soviet Union, Eastern & Western Europe, the Middle East & Africa are all areas which have a significant & growing demand for our products.
5.What made you decide to expand your business overseas?
Our UK markets are quite mature and also very competitive. Some overseas markets are very embryonic and also difficult to do business in. We believe we can offer solutions to customers in these countries and we are willing to go that extra mile & address the difficulties in trading in these areas.
6.What has been your biggest exporting / importing challenge?
Understand customer needs !
Customers in different countries can have completely different needs to UK customers for exactly the same products & applications. Understanding how a customer’s needs differ for operating equipment in Russia at minus 40˚C or in Africa at plus 40˚C is not always readily apparent when you are sat behind a desk in Spalding.
7.What’s the most helpful piece of international trade advice you have received?
The best piece of advice received was about the ‘Export Market Reach Scheme’ (EMRS). The EMRS is a little known about, but I understand, one of UKTI’s most effective initiatives. In my experience of over 25 years in export, the best piece of advice I have had from an old boss of mine was; “fail to plan, then you plan to fail” EMRS helps you do in depth market research of your chosen market in a target overseas country. As part of the initiative there is even a one day training course on how to effectively plan your market research – absolutely invaluable and highly recommended
8.What does the future hold? Any particular markets you are looking to target next?
Over the next decade the BRIC countries (Brasil, Russia, India and China) will add more than double the GDP growth of North America & Europe combined – seems a good place to start !