Case Study ETher NDE

ETher NDE Limited, based in Harpenden, Hertfordshire, have successfully gained a £125,000 loan from The Regional Growth Loan Scheme, managed by The FSE Group.

ETher NDE Limited was founded on 1st January 2010 by Mike Reilly and John Hansen, possessing a combined non-destructive testing industry experience of 58 years. Mike was previously Group Managing Director of Sonatest PLC from 1989 to 2009, during which time the Group grew from a $2m. to $25m. business. John was until recently Senior Staff Engineer for Eddy Current NDT at GE Inspection Technologies, St Albans, UK (previously Hocking NDT), and is Chairman of the BINDT Trade Group and a member of both the Electromagnetic and DICONDE ASTM Committees.

ETher NDE offers a range of standard eddy current probes, a specialist probe design service and standard eddy current inspection instruments, including their true handheld eddy current flaw detector, Vantage, and the brand new SigmaCheck electrical conductivity meter

The company’s output in the first year of trading consisted mainly of Probes and Accessories; then moving into a planned R&D phase in early 2011, with the intention of launching 4 new instruments, including their electrical eddy current conductivity meter SigmaCheck.and the ETi advanced eddy current flaw detector.

Its Non Destructive Evaluation instruments have applications in the Aerospace, Power Generation, Railways and O&G industries.

The loan will be used to assist the expansion with funds required for product development and an increase in the number of employees.

Mike Reilly, Executive Chairman of Ether NDE, commented, “Having almost exhausted our initial Equity Funding, yet still being two to three months away from full Product Launches of the SigmaCheck and ETi, there was a definite risk that our aggressive growth plans could veer off track. In addition, it was vital that we recruited additional staff to provide the high-quality support that we knew our newly-formed global distributor network would be seeking. The terms and availability of the FSE Funding perfectly suited a company such as ours. Apart from the additional staff, we have been able to guarantee completion of two additional Product Lines in the course of 2012”

Ian Baker, Fund Manager at The FSE Group commented, “ETher NDE have provided us with an excellent opportunity to support an innovative and experienced management team with a track record within the NDE industry. Its clearly defined strategy with growth aimed at established /growing markets points to significant growth opportunities in the next 2-3 years. Their facility is underpinned by new IP which is further backed by development grants from the TSB.

In summary its R&D programme coupled with expansion of sales into new markets made ETher NDE an ideal candidate for support. Its success has already led to new jobs being created with more to follow.”