Having seen sales increase by 50% year on year, GNG’s sports division has expanded its operations into the company’s entire 28,000sq ft manufacturing facility in Wakefield, doubling its floorspace.
Previously occupying 14,000sq ft of floor space in a nearby building in Navigation Yard, the sports operation has now moved into GNG’s main premises following the mattress division’s relocation to its new factory in Normanton. The company has made a £200,000 investment into the Wakefield site to meet the requirements of the fast-growing sports division, and has recently also invested in new CNC machinery as well as continuing its focus on R&D. GNG Sport currently employs 40 people including a 20-strong team of sewing machinists.
Established in 1995, GNG Sport manufactures white label branded sports equipment and has become the leading manufacturer of rugby training equipment suppling a large range of foam-based products from tackle bags and contact shields to post protectors and pitch kits. It is also becoming well-known within the fast-growing fitness industry, manufacturing plyo soft boxes, punch bags and exercise mats as well as many other products. Its blue-chip customers include Gilbert, Life Fitness, Decathlon and Manchester United.
“Over the last 20 years, we’ve established ourselves as a leader within the rugby sector and we’re fast establishing a similar reputation within the flourishing fitness industry,” explains Neal Spencer, GNG sports managing director. “Since the Covid outbreak, we’ve seen a surge in orders, initially with more people needing gym equipment as they worked out at home and then following gym refurbishments and upgrades post-lockdown as well as benefitting from the many new sectors we’ve moved into.
“This uplift has been accelerated by the disruption of the global supply chain with more customers here wanting to source good quality, British-made products. As a result, we were rapidly reaching capacity in our previous manufacturing space, so to be able to double our footprint at the Wakefield site is fantastic, giving us the opportunity to continue to grow – we expect to create another 10 jobs here during 2022.”
GNG Sport has developed a number of new markets and now supplies a wide-ranging customer base including safety, soft play, gymnastics and football as well as offering a multitude of applications for sectors such as early learning, schools, public health, museums, warehousing and construction.
“We are proud to have built such a successful business and to be continuing to invest in Wakefield. We remain committed to providing on-going staff development, giving our team the specialist training they need to work with a range of technical materials. There’s no doubt that it is our ability to produce everything in-house, from traditional screen printing to state-of-the-art digital printing, laser fabric cutting machines, along with converting our own foam, that gives GNG the edge over our competition.”