As 2023 draws to a close, we take a moment to reflect on a year marked by several new initiatives designed to further enhance our chemical etching services and provide long-term supply security for our customers.
This Autumn, we welcomed a new group of 16-21-year-olds into our Apprenticeship Scheme, laying the foundations for their careers in engineering.
Over their four-year placement, our manufacturing apprentices will blend classroom-based learning with hands-on experience in our photochemical etching process, all while working towards a nationally recognised engineering qualification.
By nurturing a skilled team of engineers, we ensure long-term stability, a commitment further emphasised by the delivery of more than 8,000 training hours to our existing employees over the past 12 months.
In June, we released our first Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Impact report, outlining our commitment to sustainability. This report comprehensively reviews our existing processes and establishes new benchmarks for reducing our carbon footprint.
Key achievements highlighted include a 45% reduction in total waste, obtaining 100% of our energy from renewable sources and a record 98% waste material recycling.
Aligned with the UN SDG framework, we are actively working towards delivering more components in environmentally friendly packaging, reducing single-use plastics and incorporating more recycled materials sitewide. Additionally, we are exploring options to supplement our energy usage with onsite electricity generation.
In September, Precision Micro proudly accepted the British Private Equity & Venture Capital Association (BVCA) Vision Award, recognising our commitment to growth and innovation. This acknowledgement followed a €6 million investment in expanding and reconfiguring our chemical etching plant. The award also highlighted our ongoing efforts to reduce our carbon footprint, as well as our expansion into new sustainability markets, such as the emerging hydrogen space.
In November, we finalised a further €2.1 million investment in a new state-of-the-art etch room, increasing our manufacturing capacity by 40%. Equipped with three new ultra-efficient etch machines, a dedicated measurement room for in-process checks and a bespoke large-format semi-automated print frame, the etch room allows us to process larger, thicker metal sheets with enhanced precision and speed.
The festive season is also a time to reflect on others, with rising costs for energy, transport and food leading to greater financial hardship for many this year.
Rather than arranging a Christmas party for our workforce, we have decided to all come together to support a local charity by making a £2,500 (€2,900) festive donation. The chosen charity will be selected by our team and shared on our LinkedIn page in the coming days.
Precision Micro would like to thank you for your support over the past year and wish you a happy, healthy and prosperous 2024.