Avocet began trading in 1996 and back then steel was still big business. The Midlands was well served by manufacturers of a full range of steel products from plates to beams, sections tubes and strip and many customers to consume their products. Steel did not have to travel far from manufacturer or service centre to reach its final destination.
We began trading in cold rolled precision strip. Mild and carbon steel, zinc, copper and nickel plated. Hot dip tin and tin/lead coated steel, pre-painted and printed. All these products found a market in the heart land of UK manufacture. They turned up in common items from office filing equipment, camera films, picture frames, electrical conduits, televisions and in the moving parts of cars. Competition was intense, prices were keen, volumes were high but there was room for all in this vibrant market.
The 10 years preceding 1996 saw greater structural changes in manufacturing. The gas domestic appliance boom following the installation of the North Sea gas distribution pipelines had come to an end and demand for high volumes of sheet and coil was reducing year on year. That trend has continued to today. Not only are there fewer suppliers there are fewer customers too. However the demands from these customers are more exacting than ever .
Modern steel users demand bespoke precision steel strip in gauges from 8.00mm to 0.05mm with tight tolerances on dimensions chemical analysis and mechanical characteristics. Low carbon mild steels through high strength low alloy steels, medium and high carbon steels capable of being pressed or drawn into the most complex shapes for modern applications in automotive, renewable energy and electronics. Coated steels, electro plated and organic whose added value helps keep unit costs down all have a part to play.
This is where Avocet Precision Metals comes in; through our supply partners in Europe and the rest of the world we can offer solutions in steel to the most demanding questions. In small medium or larger quantities at competitive prices backed by the renowned Avocet Service. We have the heritage but we also have the future in our hands and in our sights.