Five years ago, Kate Lewis MD of BETD joined forces with the KMF Group to help grow her business.
BETD has been providing mountain, road and tandem bike components to retail and trade for 25 years. In 2016, not long after Kate took over as MD when her father, Rob Lewis and his partner Elliot Oakes retired, she approached KMF for machining support.
Kate and MD of KMF Group, Gareth Higgins spoke in length about BETD's needs and requirements, and due to its location and the amount of components required, Gareth suggested that the KMF Group acquired BETD. Kate said: "We wanted to join forces with KMF so that the Precision Engineering division could take over the machining of our parts and we could focus on retail. The move also came with access to Gareth's business expertise. He has been brilliant for giving me advice to support the growth of the business and this year we will achieve record sales"
"The machining and production at KMF is significantly bigger than ours was, so it was a great solution that gave us direct access to their machines and capacity. One of our experienced engineers was transferred to KMF Precision Engineering to support the machining of our parts and to help to develop our increasing portfolio. We recently bought the 'Middleburn' brand, and the expertise of the team helped us to integrate an extensive new product range very efficiently"
Whilst BETD is a part of the group, the two companies operate entirely independently of one another. Kate added: "Anything that needs machining for our parts, KMF Precision Engineering does. They are essentially our key supplier and we work in the same way as their other customers would, we place an order and await delivery."
"We have a very close relationship with KMF and have weekly communication meetings. They keep us completely in the loop with our orders, any issues, deliveries and get our order to us as fast as they can."
KMF Precision Engineering is renowned for its solutions-based approach with customers, an added value service which is essential to Kate and her company's growth.
Kate continued: "If we have new ideas, we can always take them to the team at KMF Precision Engineering and they will always discuss them with us to review the plans. Rob Shore will look at the idea and let us know if it is possible, give us alternatives or offer advice about design for manufacture. They help with product development which is a huge positive and something you don't get from many other companies as it can be quite time consuming."
Regardless of the affiliation with the company, Kate said she would "definitely recommend" KMF. She added: "The facilities they have are fantastic, they use industry leading machines, and they operate to ISO standards."
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