Glasgow-based businesses receive Board of Trade accolades


Glasgow-based firms, McGavigan and Aggreko, are celebrating success after receiving a Board of Trade Award, recognising achievements in international trade.

Presented by International Trade Secretary and President of the Board of Trade Dr Liam Fox, the awards recognise companies that demonstrate excellence in international trade, demonstrating innovation, creativity and entrepreneurialism.

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Founded in 1861, Bishopsbriggs-based plastics company McGavigan makes printed and decorative plastic components and assemblies for the automotive and industrial market.

Employing 240 people at its manufacturing operation in Glasgow, from a total of 500 staff globally, McGavigan now exports to 16 different countries across the globe ranging from Spain to Slovakia and Czechia to China. The company recently started exported to Malaysia and Japan, with Asia a key region of long-term growth. International sales now account for 80% of McGavigan’s turnover.

The company has grown exponentially in recent years, quadrupling in size since 2009. Its international success has led to jobs creation both in Scotland and in key growth markets.

Speaking at the Board of Trade, International Trade Secretary, Dr Liam Fox, said:

“The judging panel was particularly impressed with how this technical plastics manufacturer have adapted their business to become a leading supplier across a diverse range of markets.

“Specifically, the judging panel noted John McGavigan’s work in China and the Middle East, where they have recently opened a new factory.”

Stephen Mathers, Director, McGavigan, said:

“It is an honour to receive this award on behalf of the entire McGavigan team who play such a vital part in the success and growth of the business. Over the past five years we have grown the business fourfold and more than doubled our workforce in the UK alone. This would not have been possible without the teamwork and entrepreneurial spirit we have built together, and we look forward to the continuation of our journey.

“My advice to any business considering venturing out into exporting its product is the value of good research. There are many valuable sources available through government and trade organisations who have local experts in many of the key markets. They can provide valuable insight on a wide range of topics, ranging from regulatory issues, advice on how business is conducted, accessing research on your potential competition, and even helping you hook up with potential partners or prospective clients. I’ve always found the effort you put in at this stage pays dividends once you start.”

Recognising the company’s ability to win large, international contracts, Aggreko is also awarded a Board of Trade Award at the Board of Trade, held in Stirling.

Headquartered in Glasgow, Aggreko is a world leader in the supply of mobile and modular power heating, cooling and dehumidification equipment for projects, emergency needs and events.

The company currently operates in over 130 countries worldwide, most recently powering the 2018 Commonwealth Games, held on Australia’s Gold Coast. The project involved the export of employees, products and knowledge to make the games a success.

Earlier this year, Aggreko competed against several large multinational organisations to successfully win the contract to supply power to the 2018 Winter Olympic Games, held in Pyeongchang, South Korea. The project saw the company exporting their services and equipment to power 20 event venues, in -4 degree temperatures.

The company also recently announced a £33m innovation project in Dumbarton to develop next generation power product solutions in Scotland, creating 23 new skilled jobs.

Speaking at the Board of Trade, International Trade Secretary, Dr Liam Fox, continued:

“Aggreko is already a world-leader in the field of portable generators and heating and cooling equipment.

“But what really stood out for the judges was their ability to win big contracts, including for the Olympic Games, against much larger competitors, inspiring other businesses to do the same.”

Bill Carrick, Managing Director, Temperature Control Services, Aggreko, said:

“We’re immensely proud to have won this year’s award from the Board of Trade. Wherever our exports take us, the ability to provide power, heating and cooling will continue to create potential for individuals, communities, industries and societies all over the world.

“Aggreko is a truly global business and being able to trade freely across borders, continents and hemispheres is really integral to our success.”

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