Taking a small business to a global market

 

During my career in industrial design, spanning 35 years, innovation has always been at the heart of what I do. Creating new and innovative tools that solve a problem is my passion – and now it’s also my business.

DFx Technology started its life in a room of my Oxfordshire home in 2003. After starting a manufacturing company to fulfil some of my designs, I created the business to design and manufacture energy eefficient products, from LED lights to energy-saving controls. With individuals and corporations across the globe constantly looking for new ways to be more energy efficient, I wanted to create a business to serve this need, underpinned by the belief that technology can make the world a greener, safer and better place.

But it’s not enough to just be an innovative business – you need to remain innovative. And this requires a constant drive for new ideas, but also an injection of expertise that can help you take those ideas to the next level. With the huge market for LED lighting getting even bigger, both in the UK and around the world, a major focus for our business is how to capitalise on the increasing global appetite for green technology. Throughout 2013, we have been working with business coaching service
GrowthAccelerator, which has given us valuable insight into how to take advantage of these new opportunities and expand the business.

We’re expecting to grow our exports from 10% to up to 40% in the next three years. Deciding how and where to grow exports is a challenge in itself – we’re testing exports with Asia Pacific, US and European markets. But growth in one area requires work in so many other areas; from the development and management of our sales team to the upscaling of our manufacturing operation to facilitate the fi ve-fold increase in output that we need to meet our export objectives. And the input and support from experts who have gone through a similar growth process themselves has been essential.

Looking to the future, we are taking on another 15,000 sq ft of manufacturing space and installing a state of the art ‘surface mount’ line capable of increasing manufacturing throughput tenfold. This facility will create a minimum of 50 new manufacturing jobs. Export tests are going well with significant sales in the southern hemisphere and Europe, which will soon be followed by new US orders.

As a hands-on management team, we wear many hats – in the past this has meant we have been distracted from conversations about how we turn our aspirations into reality. But it is important for us to step outside of the day-to-day running of the business and look at the ‘bigger picture’. GrowthAccelerator has provided us with the focus and discipline to create a robust three-year plan and the momentum to start executing it.

 

Alan Wyn-Davies Chairman, DFx Technology

 

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