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Jack Lopresti MP opens new Third Dimension headquarters

The MP for Filton and Bradley Stoke, the Rt Hon Jack Lopresti, formally opened the new headquarters of innovative optical metrology pioneers Third Dimension today (Friday 24 June 2011).

Third Dimension is the manufacturer of the GapGun range of products, which are precision shop floor optical metrology tools for the aerospace and automotive manufacturing industries. The new headquarters, which houses the company's office and manufacturing staff and is 50 per cent larger than their previous HQ, is in the Brabazon Office Park in Filton, South Gloucestershire.

"It has been a pleasure to visit Third Dimension today to see a real developing local success story that is founded on engineering excellence and sheer hard work," said Jack Lopresti. "Third Dimension is proof that even in the harshest of economic circumstances a company can be successful. For a company of this size to design, assemble and market a product that in a matter of years is being picked up by all the major manufacturers in one of the most demanding industries, and sold in more than 25 countries around the world, is testament to their knowledge and their application. A successful business creates wealth and opportunity for local people, with the creation of new jobs all the way down the supply chain. I am delighted to be part of a Government that recognises the crucial role played by small and medium sized enterprises in our economy and our policies will always do everything possible to encourage precisely the type of innovation and entrepreneurship that Third Dimension has in clear abundance."

Third Dimension's founder and Chief Technical Officer, Tim Monks, said that the move to a new headquarters was necessary to keep pace with increased demand and to pave the way for growth with investment in staff and the launch of new products. "In the short-term we are going to be launching a range of new technologies this year, which will consolidate our position in our prime aerospace and automotive markets, but which will also open the way to potentially lucrative new markets, specifically in consumer electronics and in renewable energy."

Third Dimension has become one of the leading names in precision manufacturing metrology, but the company was founded by Tim Monks almost by accident in the early 1990s.

Tim completed a PhD in electronics and started working, as a contractor, with an internationally renowned engineering technology firm. It was during this time that he began developing an electronic metrology device which had been specified by Volvo and it was this that provided the kernel of the idea behind Third Dimension.

"I was determined to set up my own business right from the start and I was convinced that the hand-held metrology device had significant commercial potential for precision manufacturing in the aeronautical and automotive sectors," says Tim.

Tim negotiated the rights to the product and set about creating Third Dimension. The company started operating as a one-man band from Tim's home, but he very quickly brought in some staff and started working on two other products. "The engineering of precision metrology had really caught my imagination and, in parallel with developing the main product, which we had by then christened GapGun, we set about creating two other technologies, Volscan, which measured air freight, and MTS, which measured aircraft wing deflections in wind tunnels."

The decisive departure from promising cottage industry to internationally recognised industry leader came about with the appointment of some senior members of staff. "I'm an engineer and whilst I was happy to grow the business up to the £1 million turnover mark, I knew that beyond this I really need to bring in professional and experienced commercial specialists to provide the solid foundations the business required for growth," says Tim.

Those individuals are non Executive Director Martin Coulthard and Finance Director Mike Dawes. "Quite simply, this company would not have flourished in the way that it has if I had not hired in Martin and Mike," says Tim. "Whilst we have a very talented product development team, and we have design and engineering capabilities far beyond our competitors, it is their acumen that has enabled us to punch above our weight and make such great inroads in our key markets."

Under the guidance of Martin and Mike, Third Dimension focused their resources almost entirely on the GapGun product and set about developing it to become internationally respected as among the best products in its market anywhere in the world. As a result the sales ledger soon started to look like a who's who of aeronautical and automotive manufacturing, and the client sheet today includes such names as Airbus, Jaguar Land Rover and Lockheed. The products are sold in 25 different countries around the world via 20 international distributors.

The organic growth afforded by the sales has seen Third Dimension rapidly develop as a business and it is predicted that turnover will double in the next three years.

"The company will continue to develop GapGun and will continue to make ever greater inroads on the aeronautical and automotive manufacturing sectors, but the growth and the new headquarters enables us to make inroads in the wind power manufacturing sector and to explore the vast potential of consumer electronics manufacturing. We are also developing new associated technologies, that we are very excited about, and will be looking to launch these within the next few months," concludes Tim.

Press release issued by Third Dimension on June 24, 2011


 Contact details from our directory:
Third Dimension Precision Measurement Equipment, Laser Measuring Equipment, Portable Coordinate Measuring Machines


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