May 16, 2020

Nitecrest to double its capacity

Sophie Chapman
2 min
Nitecrest has installed the Otto Künnecke KS 104 P two-stage punch in it's Lancashire firm
The UK plastic card manufacturer and printer, Nitecrest, has announced that it aims to double its capacity at its Lancashire firm.

The company will boo...

The UK plastic card manufacturer and printer, Nitecrest, has announced that it aims to double its capacity at its Lancashire firm.

The company will boost production with the installation of a new two-stage punch.

In December of last year, Nitecrast installed its first Otto Künnecke KS 104 P two-stage punch, with plans for additional punches to be added in the coming months.

The firm, which specialises with plastic gift cards and key tags and has clients such as M&S and Next, claims that it will now be able to take on a higher volume of jobs.


“We sit at the top tier of this specialist market and are striving to stay there. This investment, and the others we will continue with in 2018, will allow us to double our capacity,” reported Ronnie Hart, Managing Director of Nitecrest.

“There has been a perceived increase in demand for physical gift cards across our customer base that we have to be able to meet. Alongside this, we are bringing on new clients this year – which means we are very much looking forward to 2018.”

The punch is valued at approximately £240,000 (US$325,459), and has the ability of making specialised card shapes – such as M6 and key cards – in more efficient time.

Adding together the total number of punch installations, the company are investing more than £650,000 ($881,452) into increasing its capacity.

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Jun 8, 2021

IMF: Variants Can Still Hurt Manufacturing Recovery

Elise Leise
3 min
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) claims that while markets are rising and manufacturing is coming back, it’ll push for global immunisation

After a year of on-and-off manufacturing in the US, UK, and the eurozone, demand for goods surged early last week. Factories set growth records in April and May, suppliers started to recover, and US crude hit its highest price point since pre-COVID. As vaccination efforts immunise much of the US and UK populations, manufacturers are now able to fully ramp up their supply chains. In fact, GDP growth could approach double-digits by 2022

Now, the ISM productivity measure has surpassed the 50-point mark that separates industry expansion from contraction. Since U.S. president Biden passed his US$1.9tn stimulus package and the UK purchasing managers index (PMI) increased to 65.6, both sides of the Atlantic are facing a much-welcomed manufacturing recovery. 

Lingering Concerns Over COVID

Even as Spain, France, Italy, and Germany race to catch up, and mining companies pushed the FTSE 100 index of list shares to a monthly high of 7,129, some say that UK and US markets still suffer from a lack of confidence in raw material supplies. Yes, the Dow Jones has made up its 19,173-point crash of March 2020, and MSCI’s global stock index is at an all-time high. 

Yet manufacturers around the world realise that these wins will be short-lived until pandemic supply chain bottlenecks are solved. If we keep the status quo, consumers will pay the price. In April, inflation in Germany reached 2.4%, and across the EU’s 19 member countries, overall prices have increased at an unusual pace. Some ask: Is this true recovery? 

IMF: Current Boom Could Falter

Even as Elon Musk tweeted about chip shortages forcing Tesla to raise its prices, UK mining demand skyrocketed; housing markets lifted; and the pound sterling gained value. The International Monetary Fund (IMF), however, cautioned that manufacturing recovery won’t last long if COVID mutates into forms our vaccinations can’t touch. Kristalina Georgieva, Washington’s IMF director, noted that fewer than 1% of African citizens have been vaccinated: “Worldwide access to vaccines offers the best hope for stopping the coronavirus pandemic, saving lives, and securing a broad-based economic recovery”. 

Across the globe, manufacturing companies are keeping a watchful eye on new developments in the spread of COVID. Though US FDA officials don’t think we’ll have to “start at square one” with new vaccines, the March 2021 World Economic Outlook states that “high uncertainty” surrounds the projected 6% global growth. Continued manufacturing success will in large part depend on “the path of the pandemic, the effectiveness of policy support, and the evolution of financial conditions”. 

Mathias Cormann, secretary-general of the Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) concurred—without global immunisation, the estimated economic boom expected by 2025 could go kaput. “We need to...pursue an all-out effort to reach the entire world population”, Australia’s finance minister added. US$50bn to end COVID across the world, they imply, is a small investment to restart our economies.

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