Barrier Ex Ltd, the Wallsend-based supplier of hazardous area solutions, has been awarded significant funding from Innovate UK to develop and manufacture its next generation of hazardous area floodlights in the North East.

The funding, which is worth more than £300k, will support Barrier Ex’s new project to provide new and innovative lighting solutions to a wide range of sectors, including oil and gas, airports, waste and water treatment, and distilleries.

The 18-month project, which is due to begin in October, will double the headcount at Barrier Ex to 30, as it creates new positions in research and development and manufacturing.

Barrier Ex, which is a member of business development organisation NOF Energy, has also recently finalised an international distribution partnership with AEL. As a leading supplier of electrical equipment to both onshore and offshore industries, AEL will market the new technology developed as part of the Innovate UK project, as well as existing products, to be supplied on an international scale.

This achievement follows on from Barrier Ex’s recent acceptance on to the RTC Global Accelerator Programme.  This will involve the company visiting Singapore next month to attend the British High Commission followed by a demonstration of the company’s products at the Techinnovation Exhibition in the same location on 18 and 19 September 2018.

Steven Lee, Managing Director at Barrier Ex, said: “Being selected for the Innovate UK funding programme against such intense competition was an excellent result for Barrier Ex.  For us then to become one of a handful of companies selected for the Global Accelerator Programme really has capped a great couple of months and laid the platform for an exciting time ahead.

“We have a great team here at Barrier, along with fantastic support from North Tyneside Council, RTC North and NOF Energy, and have also found an ambitious international distribution partner in AEL for our products.”

Norma Redfearn CBE, Elected Mayor of North Tyneside, said: “I am delighted that we were able to help Barrier Ex secure funding to bring their innovative lighting solutions to market and we look forward to working with the company as it grows. Barrier Ex is a fantastic example of a North Tyneside company embracing innovation to develop world class products, increase productivity and create local employment and I wish them every success.”

Paul Livingstone, Business Development Manager at NOF Energy, said: “The North East has a cluster of very innovative, technology-led companies, which have established a key role in the industry supply chain. This latest development highlights the impacts of continued R&D to create solutions that meet and exceed the requirements of the industry.”