Marmax Products Boosts Efficiency and Innovation with Durham Business Growth Support

Durham Business Growth is supporting Marmax Products to improve efficiencies and introduce brand new products, making them more resilient to a highly competitive and changing market.

For more than four decades, Marmax Products has been crafting 100% recycled plastic outdoor furniture and play equipment. From their base in County Durham, they cater to a diverse range of customers, from theme parks to parish councils.

Operating in a fiercely competitive market, the team has put in tremendous effort to streamline processes, using efficiency to their advantage instead of raising prices. Economic shifts, like the recent uptick in minimum wage, pose challenges to this model, prompting Marmax to seek further efficiencies to safeguard the business.

Through Durham Business Growth they have been able to access grant funding, training, and a Digital Health Check to help them become more efficient, remain competitive, and introduce new products.

The Managing Director, Dave Johnson, brought in fresh practices from his automotive industry background and is committed to sustained company growth. While all waste already goes back into plastic manufacturing, they have strategically relocated machines in the factory to trim down production time.

Despite these accomplishments, Marmax has ambitions to go further. The company is gearing up to unveil new product lines, and thanks to Durham Business Growth, they are working with UMi to secure grant funding for the necessary tools and machinery.

Collaborating with RTC North, the team will assess their current processes and equip staff with productivity tools and techniques. Business Durham, as the lead partner in Durham Business Growth is also working with the company to embed a culture of continuous improvement, providing training and leadership development for senior staff and sourcing design and production apprenticeships from relevant colleges.

Beyond optimising workflows, Marmax are ramping up their targeting techniques. This has become even more important with the current cost of living issues and budgetary constraints, which in turn have resulted in turnover reductions. Marmax have been looking to attract architects and landscape garden designers to specify their sustainable outdoor furniture, which they hope would increase the collaborations with building contractors when sourcing products for regeneration or new build projects.

The team are determined to showcase the exciting new product range on their website, social media pages and with existing and new catalogues - catalogues being one of the company's primary distribution channels. UMi is stepping in to lend support by conducting a Digital Health Check, evaluating online performance and helping to refine how Marmax targets customers.

As the company ventures into this exciting phase of growth, Marmax Products is not just crafting recycled plastic outdoor furniture; they are shaping a sustainable and thriving future. The upcoming launch of new product lines is a testament to Marmax’s enduring ambition, and with the support of Durham Business Growth and partners like UMi, RTC North, and Business Durham, the company is poised for even greater heights.

Dave Johnson, Managing Director of Marmax Products said: "Marmax are a proud member of the Durham business community, an employer based in Stanley, employing local people. We have been delighted with the support that Business Durham and their partners have provided our company and with additional funding, we hope to further develop our working practices to safeguard our existing business and expand our capabilities to meet new customer demands and expectations. Our aim is to support our customers in purchasing sustainable products that support their journey towards net zero and carbon neutrality”.