By adopting a servitization model – with 10% of customers buying machining on an hourly rate – MNB Precision Engineering is in a strong position to benefit from an upturn in oil and gas.
Since taking the reins of the business in 2012, brothers Luke and Elliot Benton have helped MNB Precision to come back from the brink through a focused business strategy.
In 2014, MNB Precision began working with Aston University’s Advanced Services Group on its servitization programme. The manufacturer brought previously outsourced services in-house, offering customers a complete end-to-end engineering precision service that significantly reduces customer costs and lead times. This included adding a series of Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) techniques, including liquid dye penetration, and magnetic particle inspection. The leadership team has now taken its servitized offer to another level by providing machining by the hour. To date, three customers have converted to paying an hourly rate for MNB Precision’s machining expertise, already accounting for 10% of the manufacturer’s turnover.
The company is now in a strong position to take advantage of an upturn in the oil and gas, which has resulted in it increasing its staffing from 30 to 101 employees and tripling turnover to £10.5m in just two years. With an orderbook forecast to hit £18m next year, MNB is providing services to over 40 customers, many of which are OEMs and Tier 1 companies.
In the last year, it has invested £750,000 in new CNC machines to boost productivity and it has now invested a further £500,000 in a CNC turning machine, two CNC milling machines and a heavy-duty press, all of which will help increase productivity.
The turning machine will also enable MNB to offer a more varied machining capability with live tooling and Y-axis machining, whilst the fourth machine, a 250-tonne hydraulic press, will allow the company to take on even more complex components and to enter into new markets in the coming months.
MNB Precision Managing Director, Luke Benton, said: “It has been a hell of a journey over the last few years, but precision engineering is in our blood and Elliot and I have been determined to make a success of it. Our focus has been putting customers at the heart of everything we do, understanding their issues and adapting to provide innovative solutions. Many of our competitors have stuck to a production-based model, but our global customers demand new thinking from their supply chain. We’re not just a company that cuts metal but a partner in providing precision engineered parts and services and that’s what’s given us our competitive edge.”
Photo: MNB Precision Managing Director, Luke Benton