Wigan chemical firm wins top award

Staff at work
Staff at work

A leading maker of specialist polymers and chemicals based in Wigan has been crowned Manufacturing Company of the Year.

The Chemicals Northwest awards took place at the Imperial War Museum North, Manchester, and was attended by over 200 professionals from the North West’s chemical industry who saw Standish firm Bitrez take top honours.

Sponsored by Biochemica Water, the award recognises the company’s sustainable growth and excellence in developing and bringing innovative products to market.

Its managing director Paul Jones said: “We are delighted to have won manufacturing company of the year, especially considering the calibre of our opposition.

“We’ve had an outstanding 12 months necessitating the transition to a 24-7 operation increasing capacity and providing a means for further production output.

“We couldn’t have done it without the support of our customers, suppliers and exemplary staff.”

Bitrez’s synthetic resin, catalysts and curing agents are used by world class companies across aerospace, defence, automotive, construction, packaging and coatings industries.

Products in the firm’s range include:

Curabox – a family of flame retardant thermoset resins used in primary and secondary structures for aerospace, or frames, body panels and structural reinforcements on trains, buses, trucks and cars

Curaphen – phenolic polymers with specialist low free formaldehyde resins which have sold more than 5,000 tonnes into the packaging sector and are gaining traction in other coatings businesses across the globe and the world’s first REACh (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals) compliant Ketamine epoxy curing agent.

Established in 1980, the company’s raison d’être is to develop innovate solutions to fill the gap provided by products that have been withdrawn from the market due to regulatory reform.

Based on the Bradley Hall industrial estate in Standish, the firm offers a range of services from research and development to toll conversion as well as technical support.

Its team of highly qualified and experienced chemists can produce materials from laboratory scale through a transient pilot stage to enable scale up and allow for small scale qualification work before moving to commercial manufacture.