Fläkt Woods - Bringing air to life.
Fläkt Woods, based at Colchester in Essex, was formed through a merger with the previously GEC owned Woods, and the Fläkt air handling business owned by ABB. The company provides energy-efficient indoor air climate products and solutions to supply people with fresh, clean and comfortable air in non-residential buildings. It also designs and manufactures air movement products and services for industry, including fans for cooling systems, and solutions for increasing the efficiency, environmental performance and safe operation of equipment and processes. More than 50% of Fläkt Woods sales are international and the company has twice received the Queen’s Award for Export in recognition of its achievements.
Following the merger of Woods with Fläkt in 2002, its Colchester base became a centre of excellence responsible for the design, development, manufacture and support of all products in its area of specialism.
“The company relocated to a new headquarters and manufacturing facilities in Colchester,” says Paul Wenden, Engineering & Product Management Director. “That represents a huge Group investment and commitment to the UK operation.”
The company has been based in Colchester for 100 years and recognises the importance of its location for both logistics and recruitment.
“We’re a major exporter,” says Paul Wenden. “We make extensive use of ports such as Harwich to distribute our products to Europe, the Middle East and the Far East. We also import a significant number of other group products for distribution throughout the UK via the motorway network. Customer support is an integral part of our business, so London Stansted Airport is important for our service, sales and engineering teams who are visiting customers overseas.”
One of the company’s biggest competitive advantages is the quality and experience of its people.
“Fläkt Woods has many long-term employees and a number of former employees have set up complementary businesses in the area, making the Colchester area ideal in terms of relevant expertise for air movement products,” says Paul Wenden. “We recognise the benefit of access to local specialist skills so we maintain strong links with local schools and colleges to maintain the development of engineering knowledge.”
This local depth of skills enables the company to look to the future with confidence. “We have invested heavily in a new research and development facility to enable us to maintain and develop our innovative range of products and solutions,” says Paul Wenden. “Fläkt Woods is building on a tradition of specialist engineering skills in Essex and is well placed to succeed in global markets.”