A WEARSIDE firm is looking to expand its overseas sales after winning the royal seal of approval for its export efforts.
Washington-based Rayovac was presented with the coveted Queen’s Award for Enterprise for the second year in a row.
The hearing aid battery manufacturer was presented with the award by Her Majesty’s Vice-Lord Lieutenant for Tyne and Wear Fred Hoult who recently visited the plant for a tour.
Rayovac received the International Trade award in recognition of its achievements in overseas markets, where it has continually grown sales over recent years, pushing turnover to more than £40million a year.
The award is the latest in a series for the firm and divisional vice-president Vince Armitage said: “We’ve had an impressive run of success in recent months.
“It’s an honour to receive each and every one of these awards and is a testament to the company and the fantastic team we have in Washington.
“To win the Queen’s Award not once but twice is a major achievement and it’s fantastic that our efforts have also been recognised by other organisations and industry bodies.
“Our global market is growing daily, and 85 per cent of our sales are now through export alone.
“We have made significant investment in our manufacturing capability as the market and demand for our products continues to grow. We hope to build on these successes in 2013.”
The company, a division of the US-based Spectrum Brands, is the manufacturer of the world’s top-selling hearing aid battery and exports to countries across Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific from its Washington facility.
Rayovac has won four awards in recent months, including the EEF North East Outstanding Export Award at the EEF Future Manufacturing Awards 2012 and Eco-Product of the Year at the 2012 In Business Sustainability Awards for its mercury-free hearing aid batteries.
Rayovac is at the forefront of the drive to develop mercury-free batteries, responding to growing demand for environmentally-friendly technology, a commitment which also saw the company win the Eco-Efficiency Initiative of the Year award at the same event for work at its U.S. sister factory.
Lastly the company also picked up an export award after impressing judges at Business Insider Group’s manufacturing ‘Made in the North East Awards.’