C&F books €123m ahead of US and Japan sales drive
Manufacturing and engineering firm C&F Group booked €123m in sales and made a small post-tax profit in its most recently filed accounts for 2014.
The privately owned company manufactures refrigeration and IT components and car parts for a number of well-known carmakers and major multinational companies, as well as a range of wind turbines.
Gross profits came in at €65m for 2014, up from €53.9m the previous year.
The firm had to restructure some of its operations and end some loss-making production work in 2014, founder John Flaherty said ahead of major investment in its wind turbine business, which is currently achieving significant sales in Japan and is about to embark on a sales drive in the US.
In 2014, the company invested €10.4m in subsidiary companies - up from €2.6m the previous year, and €23.3m in product development, up from €21.7m in 2013. "You have to do development alongside your customers, and the majority of the costs involved are incurred in the first year of the contract," Mr Flaherty added.
The company has spent three years securing certification so that its turbines can be deployed in Japan, where they have to undergo rigorous testing to prove they can withstand extreme weather such as earthquakes and typhoons, and will be initiating a sales drive in the US later this year. The towers for the turbines are manufactured locally in Japan, while the electronic components and nacelles are made in Galway.
"There have been high entry costs for the Japanese market, in time and certification costs, but we are now shipping at least eight turbines a week there," said Mr Flaherty, adding that increased sales will be reflected in its 2015 and 2016 accounts.