The year started on a highly positive note for Devon-based XYZ Machine Tools which posted record sales for February and March. April has continued that trend and its year-on-year figures have defied the gloom that the Covid pandemic has wrought, showing year-on-year UK sales growth of over 18 per cent.

These sales figures are the result of hard work by the team at XYZ Machine Tools and also the resilience shown by the UK engineering sector as a whole, with UK manufacturing growing at its highest rate in almost 27 years according to the respected HIS Markit/CIPS PMI report.

“Back in April 2020 we were in uncharted territory, our order intake for that month was just six machines, and we simply did not know what the future held for us as a business and the country,” says Nigel Atherton, Managing Director, XYZ Machine Tools. “Government schemes such as Furlough and the recently introduced Super Deduction Scheme were very welcome, saving jobs here at XYZ Machine Tools and across our customer base. We also implemented changes to our forward orders, while maintaining deliveries to help support our suppliers and ensure survival all round.”

Twelve months on the figures could not be more different with order intake for April totalling 106 machines, made up of a mix of ProtoTRAK-controlled mills and lathes, vertical machining and turning centres and some manual machines. Projections indicate that this improvement in sales will continue, aided by the successful vaccine roll-out and the daily positive news on how the UK is moving out of lockdown as infections continue to fall dramatically. Supporting this growth XYZ Machine Tools has made several new appointments and is actively recruiting to add to its existing Area Sales Manager, Service and Applications Engineering teams.

“We need to proceed with some caution, maintain safe working practices, but at the same time we must continue to be optimistic. As such we have robust plans in place to help XYZ Machine Tools continue on this positive trend,” says Nigel Atherton. “These include stepping up our machine orders with suppliers to increase stock levels; new machine introductions; partnering Ceratizit as it opens a new showroom in Sheffield, which will have XYZ 750LR, XYZ RLX425, XYZ RMX3500, XYZ UMC-5X, XYZ 320LTY, and an XYZ 800HD machines in place; we will also be opening our own showroom in Huddersfield later this year. This 5000 ft2 facility is located just off the M62 and will serve customers either side of the Pennines with training and demonstrations.”