Building a worldwide export business totalling 63 countries has earned Lancashire-based housewares manufacturer What More UK an International Trade Award.
Directors and staff are celebrating an early Christmas present in the shape of the 2015 International Trade Award, presented by the East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce to the region’s Outstanding Exporter of the Year.
Director Tony Grimshaw said: “It’s always a thrill to be recognised as a British manufacturer exporting its goods overseas and to say we are pleased at winning the Chamber of Commerce International Trade Award is a massive understatement. Our thanks go to not only our own staff, but also to our suppliers and customers and, of course, to the Chamber. It’s got our Christmas off to a great start!”
He added: “What More was only founded in 1999 and we didn’t start exporting until around 2008, so to have the international business we have today is quite a feat and a credit to everyone involved with the company.
“This award is particularly special to us because when we set out to become an exporter the East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce was a great source of help and advice to us, together with the UKTI and our trade association, BHETA. Without their ongoing support we certainly wouldn’t be where we are today.”
Last month a short video about What More’s manufacturing capabilities was chosen to help launch a new online TV channel, ‘Export TV’, for UK Trade and Industry (UKTI) – the Government department which advises and encourages UK exporters. What More also holds the Queen’s Award for Enterprise in International Trade.
What More UK employs around 220 people at its Padiham offices and 500,000 sq.ft manufacturing facility at Altham. It has a portfolio of more than 650 products, mostly plastic housewares, gardening and DIY products sold under the ‘Wham’ brand. Recently it has also diversified into non-stick and enamel bakeware and traditional wooden brushes, all manufactured in Lancashire.
The company exhibits at leading trade shows in the UK and Europe and next March will make its American debut at the International Home and Housewares Show in Chicago – the world’s biggest housewares-only trade show.
The International Trade Award 2015, presented to What More UK