Crystal clear that TES is one firm set to grow
In our smallbusinesscan series focusing on entrepreneurs, we look at an exceptional exporting success
Tes is one of Northern Ireland's great export successes.
The Cookstown company manufactures water treatment, water supply and power distribution systems - with 70% of its output going abroad. TES is already one of Cookstown's largest employers, with 70 people working for it and it is confident this will rise to 120 by next year.
The company manufactures systems from scratch and its own designs comply with the highest quality standards - products conform to BS and ISO standards. As a result, TES has gained a strong reputation in the industry, helping it to win global export orders in Iraq, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Australia, Kazakhstan and the Czech Republic.
TES has also recently broken into the market in England, winning framework contracts with Northumbrian/Northumberland Water and the Environment Agency.
The company aims to win further contracts in England and has just opened a manufacturing facility in Stoke-on-Trent to complement its existing sales operation there.
This is in addition to the 14,500 sq ft purpose-built factory in Cookstown's Kilcronagh Business Park, which it moved into in 2009.
Joint managing directors Brian Taylor and Noel McCracken formed TES in 1999, having previously worked together at another company.
Taylor went self-employed in 1998 and McCracken joined him the following year to establish TES.
Taylor and McCracken were unhappy that their previous employer focused more on cost than quality and they did not have confidence in that company's future. "The company was not going very well," said Mr Taylor of his previous employer.
Although TES is now in a phase of fast expansion, this has been built on an approach of steady growth and consolidation. "It is a very conservative industry," Mr Taylor said.
"It takes a lot to get into. Only now are we a mature company in the eyes of customers. And so we have won lots of good contracts in recent years."
As well as having success in the water supply and water treatment sectors, TES also designs, builds and installs switchgear and power distribution centres.
Demand comes from banks and other financial services companies, which are major consumers of electricity.
"They need very specialised power distribution systems for their trading halls, for their TV screens and so on," said Mr Taylor.
The quarrying sector and schools are other major customers.
But the business remains firmly committed to the water supply and water treatment sector.
"We design and build complete water treatment systems from scratch," Mr Taylor said.
"So we will design and built the systems for a complete town."
TES is now entering a period of further rapid growth. "We want to consolidate our position in the UK, especially in England," said Mr Taylor.
This will be assisted by the new manufacturing facility in Stoke and by also offering maintenance as well as manufacturing services to its valued customers.
This truly is an exciting time for TES.