Scotland’s Bravest Manufacturing Co. is an upcoming social enterprise situated in the Erskine Veterans Village Estate in Bishopston, Renfrewshire. Famous for supporting Armed Forces Veterans since the darkest days of WW1, when many service personnel returned from conflict needing lifelong care and support. Today, the social enterprise employs disabled veterans, to give them new skills and build their self-confidence, leading to helping them move on to full time employment.
The estate features a commercially viable factory boasting state-of-the art technology, designed to provide jobs and support to those brave men and women adjusting to life outside the military. The commercial factory is a business model based on the Britain’s Bravest Manufacturing Company in Kent, who are part of the Royal British Legion Industries (RBLI). The commercial factory competes for contracts in the private and public sectors to produce signs and panels, as well as high-quality digital printing using the latest technology.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Scotland’s Bravest Manufacturing Co. was approached by the NHS, Scottish Police and Scottish Prison Service to manufacture COVID-19 signage. However, the company did not have the machinery and capacity to support such demand in a short time frame.
Michelle Ferguson, Director at the Scotland’s Bravest Manufacturing Co. explains “With the current team, we couldn’t deliver the number of signs they required in the time needed, so we approached Zund as the leading manufacturer of cutting systems for a second user machine. We needed a machine which cuts not only vinyl but Foamex and other hard materials. We have received numerous prices but unfortunately our budget was restricted, and this was a massive investment for us”.
Zund UK responded with no hesitation and assisted with the requirements provided by the Scotland’s Bravest Manufacturing Co. A second user Zund S3 Digital Cutter refurbished and serviced with new conveyor belt was sourced and installed within weeks of the enquiry.
Nicki Kay, Managing Director at Zund UK said “We managed to source a second user cutter and made a charitable donation of refurbished tools to make the numbers work within Scotland’s Bravest Manufacturing Co’s limited budget. We are delighted to been able to assist this great organisation with a new cutter investment and will continue to support them to go from strength to strength, supporting ex-military personnel.”
Since the installation, Scotland’s Bravest Manufacturing Co have produced over 5,000 signs and Michelle explains “Feedback from our clients has been exceptional due to quality and delivery time scales. A hospital last week required 230 signs delivered next day which we were able to produce to their specification. As a social enterprise and supported business our aim is for our team to develop new skills and help the veterans and others with disabilities build their self-confidence”.
Davie who joined in January is the lead user of the Zund, along with his Training and Support Manager, they enjoyed the training and were able to exceed expectations. Davie said, “I loved getting to know the machine and I am looking forward to our next project when we start producing vehicle graphics on the Zund.”
Reflecting back on their Zund purchase Michelle said “Investing in the Zund was a major decision for our organisation. We were in the midst of the pandemic when we produced the business case for this purchase, we believed with the right equipment not only could we offer new expertise to our team whilst producing vital products to help the Public, Private and Third Sector return to work. With our knowledge of the signage industry we were able to advise our clients on the right materials for floor graphics ensuring the safety of their staff, clients and visitors. This expertise along with the quality, speed and reliance of the Zund cutter has ensured that we have been able to exceed our customer requirements. Looking forward we will also be able to increase capacity as the Zund technology and range of equipment will ensure that we can keep pace with the needs of our diverse client portfolio”.