Powering through

How International Trade has allowed YorPower to expand its international business aspirations in over 60 countries worldwide.

YorPower Ltd is a successful supplier of diesel generators in the UK with a rapidly developing client base overseas. Based in Leeds, West Yorkshire, the company also sells engine parts and generator spares and has supplied products to customers in over 60 countries worldwide.

The company’s turnover is forecast to be up to £8 million for 2012 with 70% coming from exports. Managing Director, Ian Thompson, is positive about the future and stated the business is set for continued expansion overseas with a number of projects in Nigeria, Ghana and Kenya on the table. The biggest achievement, however, stems from the fact the original company, YorPower Manufacturing Limited, actually went in to administration in 2009 and therefore the ‘New YorPower’ effectively began its new life as a start-up company just less than three years ago.

Ian saw an opportunity, invested and became involved in what is now YorPower Ltd in November 2009 as one of the major shareholders after the previous business went into voluntary administration in July 2009. He knew that to develop the business the focus would need to be on revisiting and developing relationships with the company’s historical customer base and contacts, as well as on new markets.

Between November 2009 and December 2010 YorPower was based in Pocklington, south of York. During a drop in session at the Pocklington Airfield Industrial Estate, organised by Business Link, Ian formally approached Business Link for advice on the types of support available to YorPower and from there was put in touch with Stephan Stahl, International Trade Advisor with UKTI Yorkshire and Humber. Following his initial discussions with Stephan, UKTI were able to provide the company with grant funding, advice and support to enable them to successfully develop their newly identified markets overseas.

Company: YorPower

Industry: Manufacturing

Website: www.yorpower.com

The first market they focussed on was the Middle East; specifically Kuwait and Qatar, to re-establish contact with major dealers they had dealt with previously. This proved effective and resulted in a $400,000 contract in Kuwait with continued repeat business. Africa had historically proved lucrative for the business and so it proved again as YorPower concentrated its development efforts simultaneously on Ghana, Nigeria, Angola and Kenya, with in excess of $3 million worth of business.

The Far East followed and after a very successful prospecting visit to China in 2010 YorPower entered into a partnership with a major manufacturing company.

As a result, YorPower now has a 20% stake in a UK based manufacturing business with all of the benefits of European manufactured components (engines, alternators and control panels) with the economic advantage of sourcing high labour intensive items such as generator frames, canopies and fuel tanks, in China. The benefits and advantages are many, not least being that it paved the way for a new niche market for the company, selling OEM spare parts to China.


If you are based in the Yorkshire and Humber region and are interested in developing your business overseas please contact:

UKTI Yorkshire

Tel: 0300 365 1000

Email [email protected]

If you are based in one of the other UK Regions find your nearest International Trade Advisor via our postcode search facility in Contacts in your region.

Sectors: Automotive
Countries: Yorkshire and Humberside
Topics: Getting Started
Export Action Plan