DE-ICER specialist Kilfrost is warming up for further international growth in the US and China after securing a funding package from its new banking partners, RBS.
The Newcastle-based firm will use the undisclosed sum to further serve the European airline industry in which it holds a 60% market share.
Set up in 1932, Kilfrost celebrated its 80th year in business earlier this year and is one of the UK’s fastest-growing private businesses.
The 77-year-old family business has been unaffected by the mild British weather as it sells products used to clear airports, aeroplanes and railways into more than 60 countries.
In 2011, 76% of Kilfrost sales were made overseas, with significant growth in demand from the Chinese market.
Chief executive Gary Lydiate said: “From our roots in de-icing St James’ Park football ground in the 1930s, through to the introduction of the Speciality Fluids Division in 2011, we lead the market by looking to the future and investing heavily in research and development.
“We are constantly looking at new and emerging markets where our expertise gives us the market edge and are looking to continue expanding in the US and China.”
The company has seen its revenues jump by nearly a quarter to £54.95m in the year to the end of September last year from £42m in the 12 months before that.
Lydiate said that trade was particularly strong in the US, where he hopes to increase sales from £15m last year to £30m or around a third of the market.
And in China, where more than 120 airports are being built as the economy continues to grow, the company is also making strong inroads into a market which had previously been dominated by native de-icer firms.