Company plans to double its workforce with major factory expansion

Dhan Nepali working on the shop floor at Caribbean Blinds Picture: JAHED QUDDUS

Dhan Nepali working on the shop floor at Caribbean Blinds Picture: JAHED QUDDUS - Credit: Archant

A Suffolk manufacturer is set to start work on a major factory extension – and plans to double its workforce.

Stuart Dantzic, managing director of Caribbean Blinds Picture: JAHED QUDDUS

Stuart Dantzic, managing director of Caribbean Blinds Picture: JAHED QUDDUS - Credit: Archant

Caribbean Blinds said it was “thrilled” to announce plans to start work on a huge 10,000sq ft expansion to its current factory site this autumn.

The building project is scheduled for completion in the spring of 2020, with the space supporting the firm’s ambitious growth plans by enabling it to create more products while keeping lead times short.

MORE – Government hands cash boost to “shovel-ready” projects in SuffolkThe business hopes to double its workforce from 24 to 48 as a result.

Managing director Stuart Dantzic said: “As the fastest growing external shading company within the UK, this extension will allow for our ongoing development and provide us with the production capacity to supply expected demand.

“This investment has also enabled us to remain on our current site and in Sudbury for the foreseeable future, continuing Caribbean Blinds’ two-decade long residence in the area.”

The new and improved factory would “massively impact” the local economy, he said, enabling the business to employ more people.

The height of the extension has scope for even further future growth, with the ability to include a second – and potentially third – floor in the extension building, mirroring the floor plans of the existing main building, he said.

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Caribbean Blinds will be recruiting a further six technicians initially, but more expansion of the workforce is planned.

The works will more than double the company’s current storage capacity, enabling it to accommodate all aluminium profiles for every product line, as well as the aluminium and steel cutting department, releasing space within the main building for extra assembly stations and rigs, resulting in a significantly increased production capacity.

The family-run business, which was founded in 1987 by Ray and Angie Dantzic, continued to evolve through the coronavirus lockdown period, when it launched its Holiday at Home campaign, promoting home-garden-based upgrades as an alternative to foreign travel.

In June, it celebrated a record sales month with a 10% increase in sales compared to May 2019 as a result of the campaign.

The firm is now run by the couple’s sons, Stuart and Brad Dantzic, who acquired it in a structured buy-out in January 2017.

Since then, the sons have driven growth by 30% year-on-year, more than doubling turnover.

The manufacturer recently scooped the People’s Choice Award for the East and East Anglia region at the Family Business of the Year Awards 2020.

Caribbean Blinds specialises in the manufacture and supply of outdoor shading systems including patio awnings, external blinds and its louvred roof canopy branded the Outdoor Living Pod.

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