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Integra Buildings celebrates 20-year milestone with contract wins and expansion plans

Modular specialist Integra Buildings is celebrating its 20th anniversary with a raft of major new contracts as it moves forward with ambitious expansion plans.

The East Yorkshire-based business – one of the UK's leading designers and manufacturers of innovative and bespoke modular buildings – has seen rapid growth, driven by the company’s reputation for quality, project performance and innovation.

The past year has seen Integra complete two of its most prestigious projects – a £2.4m education block for Wellington College in Berkshire, one of the world’s leading coeducational day and boarding schools, and a £2.1m project for Mencap in Leeds for the design and construction of a nursery and community space.

Recently the business has won its largest contract yet, a £4.6m project for sports changing facilities at multiple sites, as well as a £3.3m scheme for a new primary school in the south east, and is in the process of completing another significant project, a £1.6m scheme for a classroom extension and new teaching block in Leeds.

Integra has also secured approved and favoured contractor status on six frameworks with local government and public sector organisations across the country.

It means Integra marks 20 years in business in buoyant mood, with the company recording a record turnover of £18.6m in 2016 and forecasting revenues of £21m this year.

It’s all very different from when Managing Director Gary Parker and a handful of colleagues launched Integra in 1997, initially building two units a week.

Mr Parker said: “We started small but we believed in the business and the industry and we had a passion to be successful. We’ve always focused on taking the company forward.

“A key to our success has been always keeping strong cash reserves in the business. That has given us control of our own destiny.

“We’ve been cautious with our money, but ambitious for the business. Our expansion has been consistent, but controlled.

“We’ve put ourselves in a good position. Our financial stability has given us the capacity to seize opportunities to grow and also given clients confidence to trust us with ever larger projects.”

Another major factor in Integra’s sustained growth has been the loyalty, commitment and expertise of its staff, with 15 of the 90-strong workforce having been with the company for at least 15 years and many more with the company for more than 10 years.

Commercial Director Chris Turner is a prime example of Integra’s commitment to supporting its people to grow and succeed, having started with the company 15 years ago as an apprentice.

Mr Turner said: “Our industry isn’t known for longevity of employment, but we’ve stood by our employees and supported their development and they’ve stood by us. That has paid dividends in retaining knowledge, skills and commitment to doing a great job for our clients.

“Even during the worst of the recession we had just a couple of redundancies and some short-time working. Other than that brief period, our staff have had the confidence of working for a company that has grown consistently – in the past three years we have taken on 20 more people and our current expansion plans will create at least 18 new jobs.”

Integra operates from two sites east of Hull, at Burstwick and Paull, currently. With production running at full capacity at both sites, the company is executing a £3m growth strategy to take the business to the next level.

The plans involve consolidating all Integra’s functions in a single, fit-for-purpose operation at Paull, following the purchase of six acres at that site for £1.6m, adding it to 2.5 acres the company previously owned and operated there. The acquisition is being followed by a further investment of £1.4m in new facilities.

Integra has now secured planning permission for a new, two-storey modular office block at the heart of the Paull site which will showcase the quality of materials and design available to the company’s clients. The offices will include dedicated training areas, a business lounge and meeting rooms, which will also be available to clients and suppliers. The new facility is scheduled to open in April 2018, allowing Integra to vacate the Burstwick site.

The redeveloped Paull site will also include two, new bespoke manufacturing facilities that will double capacity, with the build of the new offices planned as the company’s first project on these production lines.

Integra manufactures modular buildings off site for permanent installation across a wide range of sectors, including sport, leisure, education, healthcare and commercial operations, and highly-durable, anti-vandal modular buildings used predominantly for welfare, canteen and toilet facilities on construction sites.

The £3m investment will position the company for further growth in a sector of ever-increasing importance to the construction industry, as clients recognise how innovative modular solutions make building projects easier, cheaper and faster, with no compromise on quality.

It will also enable Integra to expand and relaunch training and apprenticeship programmes that have been constrained by the limitations of its current facilities.

Mr Parker added: “Our vision is to continue to grow the business while changing perceptions of the modular industry. We believe passionately that modular building is the way forward for construction and an ever-growing number of clients, across many sectors, agree.

“We’re proud of all we’ve achieved over the past 20 years, but we’re looking forward, not back. There’s no better way to celebrate two decades of success than to push forward with new opportunities.”
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