Ian Meadows hands over the executive reins after 45 years at R S Clare, Liverpool’s oldest manufacturer.
Following a £2,000,000 investment in new extended offices and the first phase of a state of the art grease manufacturing facility, Ian who has been CEO since 1989 and Chairman since 1996, engaged Paul Vann as Chief Executive in the Summer. He is now confirmed in this position, and is shortly to seek Board approval for a strategic plan to take the independent company to the next level.
When he visited the company Lord Digby Jones wrote in the Visitors Book “Thanks for renewing my faith in UK Business”.
With annual sales in excess of £30 million and pretax profit of £4 million, staff are confident about the future, which is based on greater penetration of existing and new export markets for the niche products which have transformed the company’s performance over the past decade. Exports are already over 50% of sales.
Mr Meadows said “2016 saw a breakthrough in the supply of rail track lubrication in the United States and some excellent bridgeheads have been achieved in that substantial market”.
“Furthermore as the Oil Price recovers, so are sales of the company’s specialist greases for the upstream oil industry globally, and the refurbishment of the Congress Parkway bridge in Chicago five years ago provides an excellent reference point for our Bimagrip antiskid treatment which has a proven 20 year life”.
R S Clare remains the premier supplier of lubricating greases to major oil Companies in UK and through subsidiary Wilson & Scott Highways, they are a leading player in the production and application of Road Marking materials in UK.
Remaining Chairman for the foreseeable future Mr Meadows further said “ Paul comes from an engineering background and has an excellent track record in the Oil Industry and in coming years he will be mentoring the next generation of the family. David Meadows aged 33, who joined the firm recently after developing a web based retail business from scratch in Australia over the past four years, has definitely earned his stripes on his own initiative, and he is already making his mark with colleagues”.
“With the 6th generation in place, and a young strong team of chemists, engineers and market specialists, the company is well set to grow to the next level and to withstand the market pressures which are sure to buffet us”.
“We are cash rich and well able to fund growth organically, though if external opportunities present themselves, we are not averse to growing through acquisition”.