Story courtesy of The Dundee Courier (DC Thomson & Co Ltd)
DEMAND FOR CAR SENSORS IMPACTS FIFE FIRM'S PROFITS
Newly filed accounts at Companies House shows the company’s sales grew from £9.43 million in 2016 to £11.20m for the year ending October 31 2017. Pre-tax profits rose from £665,647 to £1.16m during the period. Managing Director Allan James said the firm had benefited from growing demand for sensors used in vehicles, with particularly strong growth in Asia. He said: “It’s a strong climate for us. There has been tremendous growth of sensors in vehicles and that’s only going to grow with the expansion of electric vehicles in the future.
Although we are a product company but we also produce semi-conductors and devices for other customers who have their own process recipes and designs. When we get a core competency in something like pressure sensors I look for other key manufacturers and speak to them to see if we can act as a foundry for them. In many cases, if they are in a strong growth area, they are looking to expand as well.” Mr James said the strong demand had continued this year, with the firm targeting growth of a further 15% to £13m.
Semefab has also invested significantly in staffing and equipment this year. Headcount at the Eastfield Industrial Estate-based company has risen from 98 to 125 in the past 12 months. Mr James added: “We have increased the staffing significantly. It takes a little bit of time to get people bedded in and trained. “We are on track to grow revenue by around 15% but our profit performance this year will be down slightly in a period of adjustment while we get people in and trained up.”
The tech firm has also invested $750,000 in a deep reactive ion etching tool which allows it to produce sensors within thin membranes. The firm reported activity in its closed circuit television camera and passive infrared motion detector markets were also strong, particularly in China. The company is also active in the biomedical sensor field.