A rapidly-expanding Newcastle printwear specialist, Custom Planet, is currently celebrating their tenth year of successful trading.
Originally founded by Andrew Dark and John Armstrong while still at university, the company now has a turnover of £1.2 million, and boasts a team of 15 full-time staff — making it one of the UK’s leading custom clothing suppliers.
But the road to success hasn’t always been easy. Founder and Co-Director Andrew Dark said:
“We initially began as a two-man operation printing T-shirts by hand in my parent’s garage. Now, we’re producing thousands of custom items a week using £200,000 worth of state-of-the-art printing equipment, and we’re preparing to expand our premises later this year.”
Over ten years, founders Andrew and John have weathered recessions, equipment breakdowns, and long days (and nights) of hard work. But they’re now reaping the rewards, with Andrew saying that the company has overcome every challenge and remained a great place to work:
“We began the business during the peak of the recession, so to have expanded this rapidly during a financially turbulent time has been a phenomenal achievement. John and I have always wanted Custom Planet to be a fantastic place to work, so we’re pleased that we’ve managed to create a workplace staffed by happy people who genuinely want to be here.
“We’ve trained two apprentices, both of whom now have full-time positions with the company, so we’re proud to have paved the way for new skills and expertise in the North-East.”
Andrew and John say that staying ahead of the curve has been essential to their success, and plan to keep finding new ways to innovate and expand:
“In this industry, innovation is everything — you never know what the next disruptor will be,” Andrew says. “We aim to provide the highest quality branded merchandise, and to offer customers the highest level of branding expertise, so it’s crucial that we keep investing in new equipment.
“This year, we’re expanding our factory, so we’ll have even more space to grow the business and to invest in the best technology. There’s no doubt that it’s an exciting time for everyone in the company.”