We are a precision engineering company and are fortunate to work several race teams. We also do toolmaking, plastic injection, rubber compression transfer as well as polyurethane. We are now trying to expand into casting and the whole range of toolmaking. And that can be anything from a simple plate to a bespoke part for a yacht. Langstone really get involved as much as they can because we’re engineers that have got the ability and we don’t like sitting back, we like trying to push ourselves to a really uncomfortable position. I feel that’s the way you can learn as an engineer and to keep your company in front of everyone else.
What was the catalyst?
I’d say probably the beginning of the COVID pandemic, basically, because I have had the company since 2001, I’ve sort of running mainly solely from a managing director perspective and I felt, for us, to really push the company to the next level I wanted some people to guide us to get to get there. And hence that’s why we went down the Elephants Child route.
Why did you choose Elephants Child?
When we interviewed the guys in was the summer of 2020, their whole approach was relaxed, they knew a lot of valuable information. They were very keen but they weren’t pushy, and they just come up with loads of good logical solutions. I suppose, being a conventional engineer, all I want to do is really just engineer. That’s what I do. And we need professionals behind us to be able to coach us to the right levels and push us in the right direction to make Langstone thrive in the future
Who did you work with?
Our growth advisor was Andrew Benson. It worked for us because of his pretty laidback approach to how we do things. I think it was his understanding and the fact that he’s been in business for many years. He’s been really good. He knows angles and areas that I have no idea about relating to the commercial world. He’s very straight talking as well, which I really liked. He has always tried to give us some really good thoughts and hopefully I have taken most of them on board. A very helpful guy and always there to support you through.
What have been the benefits of working with Elephants Child?
I’d say the whole process of strategy to market the company and to give us some direction going forwards and then obviously put us in the position where we could make the company ready for sale. Having professionals on board has made that relatively easy for myself. These guys gave us that chance and approach to look at our own business because we just tend to bundle along and they get us to look at it in a sort of different view rather than just actually manufacturing products. And that’s been a good insight.
What’s the journey with Elephants Child been like?
When Elephants Child came in, Langstone was already a very successful company. I wouldn’t say we lacked direction because we took every opportunity, but what Elephants Child has given us is clarity of the way forward for Langstone to take the next step. To be a better player and to get more involved in marketing. They’ve been great.
Had you thought about selling before?
I think any MD rushes through their mind every sort of three to four year. But this was really the first time I gave it some serious thought and obviously luckily we had professionals on board to really give us the best opportunity to sell the company. In fact we achieved it first time straightaway is testament to all three parties, and our commitment to engineering. We had five instantly that wanted to take us and there were more in 2021.
Would you recommend Elephants Child?
The reason I’d recommend Elephants Child is because of their vast knowledge. Martin and Andy have both been in the industry a long, long time and various different sectors. I think their commercial knowledge and marketing skills are second to none. We need these guys and girls on board to really to open our eyes to what our company’s potential is. It helps to give investors clarity what the company is all about. And it’s something that I potentially couldn’t have done without the help of Elephants Child.
What’s next for you and your company?
I see the transition we’ve gone through to be really positive. I think it gives my staff a great opportunity to really push their careers along and really get the best out of them. Now as a group, both companies can work together extremely well. And pool the best resources from each company to make Langstone and PTI a force to contend hopefully allow both companies to expand their premises and their marketplace.
Three words to sum up your experience?
Professional, good fun and reliable.