Rosslee Construction, Accrington

BUILDING firm Rosslee Construction has belied difficult trading conditions with head-turning rises in turnover.

The Accrington-based company, which undertakes refurbishments, extensions and new builds saw turnover rise by 22 per cent in 2011, on top of a 20 per cent increase the previous year.

That expansion is continuing with this year’s increase anticipated to be around 20 per cent. The client list includes many top local architects, councils, dioceses and well as a strong portfolio of private clients.

The cornerstone of the success has been winning tenders for higher value contracts. The amount of contracts secured in 2011 were just 1.28 per cent up, however those contracts were 46 per cent higher in value, meaning benefits in continuity of work.

Quality is always at the forefront for Rosslee with nine out of ten contracts completed inside the company target with zero defects.

The company was founded in 1977, but bought by Gary Clarkson for £160,000 ten years ago. It is now estimated to be worth six times that.

At that time they employed three tradesmen, all of whom remain with the company today. It now employs 30, all recruited locally.

Christine Clarkson, business development director, said: “We feel Rosslee has progressed and developed dramatically through the recession.”

MDA, Blackburn

WORKING with some of the world’s biggest brands and opening a £6.5m distribution centre have led to a “genuinely fantastic” 2012 for MDA.

The Blackburn-based specialist fulfilment and procurement provider works with blue riband brands by sourcing, storing and distributing a wide range of point of sale items, marketing materials and consumable goods across the UK and internationally.

This year, MDA has announced its best ever financial performance and won massive new contracts with some of the best known global names, including Blackberry and Diageo.

The company, which celebrates 25 year in business this year, also opened the new £6.5m Walker Park Fulfilment Centre, giving yet another boost to Blackburn’s economy.

The MDA ‘team approach’ aspires to a friendly and supportive working environment, while delivering added value to clients through consistent and constant customer care.

The firm has shown terrific commitment to Blackburn, with the head office based at Waterfall Mill, Queen Victoria Street since 1997.

Additional sites include Cardwell Mill, a bespoke 250,000 sq ft building which was opened in 2006.

They currently employ 186 people across the sites.

The on-site sortation centre at Cardwell Mill offers later dispatching to clients which has reduced carrier journeys by a third.

Senator International, Altham

THE UK’s largest manufacturer of office furniture, Altham-based Senator International has branched into specialist healthcare and educational markets.

The company has five manufacturing units around East Lancashire responsible for producing just under one million items of furniture per year.

Group turnover last year broke through the £100 million mark for the first time and is on target to be repeated this year. The group also plan to increase overseas earnings, currently 17 per cent to 25 per cent within the next five years.

Chairman Colin Mustoe said the key was to keep investing in your business, even when times are tough.

He said: “If you cut things to the bone, then all you will end up with is bone.

“Sometimes it is just a case of making small, significant steps towards the goal of where you where you want your business to be. It might not feel like you are getting anywhere, but it all comes together.”

The firm was founded in 1976 with just three employees, growing to 978 by 2011. Based at Altham Industrial Estate, the business has a London showroom, design and recycling centres in Huncoat, a manufacturing base in Lower Darwen and bases in Holland and the USA.

Chairman Colin Mustoe founded the firm which was originally called Kingsway Contracts selling basic office chairs. Today the firm provide a wide range of specialist furniture: Senator, for the mid-sector market, S21 brand which indicated “world class design”, Torasen, the entry level brand with competitively priced products, Allermuir design led furniture for sepcific locations such as receptions and dining and Teal, Senator’s Care Home brand.

Europe is a growing market for the group and the establishment of a European base in Holland has allowed the firm to continue to grow.