Tools of the trade – Metaltex Company
The Metaltex Company was founded in 1945 in Switzerland, and began by manufacturing household products made of wire, such as strainers, whisks and skimmers. Today, Metaltex is one of the world’s largest producers of kitchen utensils and gadgets, with a group turnover of £70 million. The company has branches all over Europe, Hong Kong and United States.
The company is ISO 9002 accredited, and supplies supermarkets, wholesalers and cash-and-carries throughout the UK and Channel Islands. Turnover for the UK division is around £5 million.Metaltex’s UK operation was originally based in London, but moved to Milton Keynes in 1991. The company invested £3 million in a new warehouse and approached four racking companies for quotes for the storage system. Deciding to do a blind test, four suppliers were asked to send a sample of their racking and Redirack came out tops in terms of quality and design. Subsequently we supplied the original storage system and it has worked well ever since.
In 1999 growth in the Metaltex business prompted further investment in the warehouse and storage system. Again we were chosen to supply the racking. Peter Murphy, Managing Director explains: “We have been consistently impressed by Redirack’s product and service. As a company that prides itself on the quality of our products we like to work with like-minded companies. Redirack fits that bill.”
Within the Metaltex warehouse is a wide aisle storage system comprising of nine double runs of adjustable pallet racking. Each run has nine bays with 2700mm clear entry. The extension added six more double runs, these having eleven bays each. Beam levels vary according to the type of pallets being stored, Metaltex handling some pallets that are double height. In total the storage system can store around two thousand five hundred pallets. Column protectors are fitted throughout the system to protect the uprights at the end of each aisle, and an access tunnel running across the racking block completes the installation.
At any time Metaltex will have more than nine hundred product lines in stock and their customers will expect to be able to take delivery of substantial quantities on short lead times. Peter Murphy takes up the story: “Our success comes from being able to deliver high quality products quickly and efficiently. Obviously our warehouse is a key part of this process. As our business has grown, our warehouse has had to increase in size yet remain highly efficient. Our relationship with Redirack has been very important in helping us maintain this competitive edge.”