The Polybox company at Marybank, Stornoway, has become part of Moulded Foams UK.

Moulded Foams is the UK’s leading cellular foam shape moulder with other manufacturing bases elsewhere in Scotland and in England and Wales

It announced yesterday (Friday November 20) that it has bought Polybox Ltd and is bringing a reinvestment and renewal programme to the factory at Stornoway.

The takeover officially happened at the end of September but was only made public this week.

Moulded Foams is adding Stornoway to its manufacturing presence at Cumbernauld and Peterhead.

The company says that a number of new machines have been ordered and one already installed to meet an increased demand over the next few years of fish farming in the Outer Hebrides. This is part of a £250,000 investment.

The family-owned Polybox business – which became a limited company in 2005 - saw Moulded Foams as the natural acquirer of the business to protect and grow the capacity on the islands.

“Moulded Foams has continually reinvested and Polybox is seen as a natural fit for our business. We look forward to working with the Management team led by John McPhail and Craig Gillespie of our Cumbernauld site to oversee the investment throughout 2020, 2021 and beyond,” the official statement says.

Moulded Foams, which also has manufacturing sites in Lincolnshire and South Wales, is expanding its presence across Scotland by adding the Isle of Lewis-based firm to its portfolio. It is forecast that the acquisition will safeguard all 14 jobs at the island firm.

Moulded Foams chief executive, John Thornberry, led a management buyout of the original Cumbernauld business in 2006 when its turnover was £2 million. Since then, it has seen rapid growth, delivering close to £20m in 2018.

He said: “We’ve expanded our operations through a mixture of organic growth and targeted acquisitions. Having factories close to our customers is key to our strategy and we will look to make further acquisitions as we expand our geographical footprint across the UK.”

The new expansion follows an investment from Business Growth Fund last year - BGF is an investment partner for growing companies in every sector of the economy. They say they “provide the tools you need to grow, from funding to expertise, while letting you set the course. We believe in the power of brilliant businesses to drive innovation, generate progress and deliver prosperity. And we thrive in our role to help make that happen.”

Moulded Foams produces a range of 98 per cent air products which protect food, goods and insulate buildings. With properties including temperature resistance, shock absorption, acoustics and light weight load bearing, the foams supplied by the business help preserve energy and protect the longevity of goods for both export and domestic