“If it’s a belt, we can probably make it”
- Gerry Byrne
With over 30 years’ experience in conveyor belting, GB Belting have grown into a respected national and international supplier of fabricated PVC and PU conveyor belts. We visited their factory in Thornaby-on-Tees to hear all about the company and how a grant from Tees Valley Business Compass has enabled them to purchase new equipment and create two new jobs. We chatted with Gerry Byrne, the man who originally started GB Belting, and his son, Jeremy.
“We find that by employing local people they are more invested in the business with their efforts.”
- Jeremy Byrne
GB Belting accessed a grant from Tees Valley Business Compass and used it to purchase three machines which then created two new roles within the company. Two of the three machines are variations on a theme, called a splice-press. One machine is 2.1m long and the other is 1.2m long. This added to their armoury of presses, but the addition of the 2.1m press in particular allowed them to access new opportunities, as conveyer belts are getting wider in most industries.
The other piece of equipment they purchased using the grant increases the speed with which they can splice belts. This machine has an automated process that allows them to be more competitive and respond quicker to their customers’ requirements. It was initially purchased to help them with the manufacturer of treadmill belts, but Jeremy has also realised that this machine is useful for making supermarket belts, a market they are hoping will become available to them now that they have the equipment.
“Tees Valley Business Compass gave us an opportunity to source funding that was primarily aimed at local businesses. It hasn’t just been the financial aspect of it but also the support with other elements that has helped make me focus back in on the business.”