TDK-Lambda UK is celebrating 50 years of manufacturing in Ilfracombe. Production first started there in 1966, under the name Coutant Electronics Ltd., occupying a 500m2 building with first year sales recorded at £500,000. Now as a division of TDK-Lambda, the firm’s two buildings total 6179m2, employing over 300 staff and producing more than 200,000 power supplies a year.
Coutant originally operated from a 230m2 unit in London with 20 people and recorded £43,000 of sales in their first year and by 1964 had moved to Reading. In the late 1950s Coutant Electronics merged with Electrotech Instruments, funded by a £25,000 investment from Unitech, a venture capitalist company. At that time, semiconductor transistor controlled power supplies were just emerging, replacing valves technology.
Coutant, who later merged with Lambda UK, became Coutant Lambda Ltd. Over the next 10 years Lambda Group saw several changes of ownership until it was acquired by Japanese electronics giant, TDK Corporation 11 years ago.
Phil Scotcher, General Manager, TDK-Lambda UK says: “The Ilfracombe site has enjoyed continual investment, and is now one of the most advanced electronics plants of its kind. Our products are sold worldwide, with over 80 per cent of our output being exported, helped in part by accreditation to the ISO 13485 standard. We are committed to supporting educational STEM programmes at local schools and colleges, and offer exciting employment opportunities. In addition, career enhancements are regularly provided for our workforce through training and certification.”
Adam Rawicz, Managing Director TDK-Lambda EMEA says: “Really it’s amazing that TDK-Lambda UK is the world leader in the type of configurable power supplies manufactured in Ilfracombe even against strong international competition. I think it shows how by everyone working together, concentrating on being excellent in our market niche, having the flexibility to embrace change and keeping a focus on the experience of our customers, it is possible to thrive. I am very positive about the future for our world leader in North Devon.”
For more information about TDK-Lambda, please visit the TDK-Lambda website at www.uk.tdk-lambda.com.