The Sky is the Limit at Denroy!
20 Year 14 Business Studies pupils from Bangor Grammar visited local manufacturer Denroy Plastics in February, to help give some more business background to their A level course.
After a warm welcome and a safety briefing, the boys had a short presentation from Yvonne Kennedy on the history of the company. She explained the vision and commitment of the Rainey family, who are still regularly involved in the business, and the global reach of the firm, with clients ranging from Airbus and Bombardier to Aston Martin and the NHS. She outlined the challenges and opportunities of recent years. The Covid pandemic of 2020 meant that much of the demand from the aerospace industry was halted, but massive demand for PPE products for local hospitals counteracted that. And in spite of having to work around the clock to pivot the business capacity from aeroplane components to FFP3 surgical masks, the team are glad to have been able to cope with that and help protect local NHS workers.
The boys also learned about the environmental considerations of the business. As a plastics manufacturer, it would be easy to dismiss their core business as being ecologically unhelpful. However, the company has sought to minimise its carbon footprint by extensive recycling of all waste materials and reducing electricity usage through installation of solar panels.
During the factory tour, the boys were surprised and impressed by the scale of the operations. They observed many Denroy staff at work making various components, from hairbrushes to aircraft wing parts! Indeed, the factory has been extended recently and investment made into new machinery. There was an array of injection moulding machines of various sizes and capacities, and an automated packaging machine designed in-house by Denroy engineers.
After the tour there were questions about the impact of Brexit (increased difficulty in sourcing specialist components) and wider geo-political events (aerospace concerns about quality and a desire for shorter supply chains) have led to Denroy winning more and more international contracts. There was also an invitation from Ms Kennedy to the group for any budding engineers to consider applying for apprenticeships or work placements at Denroy, as the need for innovative designers is ongoing.