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Hartlepool manufacturer expands horizons thanks to support from digital specialist

25 March 2019

Two pioneering Teesside companies have collaborated on a ground-breaking project to create an innovative visual tool, in what is a world first for the expanded metal sector.

Middlesbrough-based Animmersion, one of the North East’s fast-rising tech companies, has partnered with long-established expanded metal mesh manufacturer The Expanded Metal Company to deliver a unique creative solution.

Work carried out by Animmersion – a leading supplier in digital visualisation tools – has enabled Hartlepool-based The Expanded Metal Company to accurately portray its expanded metal mesh patterns in 2D and 3D renders.

The new, highly detailed mesh pattern renders will help specifiers and buyers – across sectors including architecture, construction, security, filtration and engineering, manufacturing and utilities – to choose the best mesh products for their requirements. The project has also strengthened the e-commerce offering and marketing capability of The Expanded Metal Company.

In addition, the collaboration has enabled The Expanded Metal Company to overcome the limitations of existing methods of accurately visualising expanded metal mesh products.

Drawing on The Expanded Metal Company’s in-house knowledge and using its algorithms, Animmersion applied the technology it employs to create virtual and augmented reality to develop a configuration solution. This can create any of the manufacturer’s meshes virtually.
The renders are used on The Expanded Metal Company’s new e-commerce website, digital marketing platforms and product brochures.
The Expanded Metal Company has a rich industrial heritage dating back to 1889 and was founded by John French Golding, the inventor and patentee of expanded metal. The firm’s site is a long-established global centre for expanded metal expertise and The Expanded Metal Company supplies high quality expanded metal mesh products for sectors including construction, filtration, engineering, transport, utilities, automotive, aerospace and architecture.

The company also has its own security range, ExMesh™, which offers innovative fencing systems and security products which are designed to protect people, property and infrastructure from a broad array of threats.

Animmersion’s team of experienced designers, artists and software engineers delivers a range of digital services, including animation, interactive displays, virtual reality and augmented reality solutions, holograms & MR and UI & UX design.

Commenting on the partnership, Dominic Lusardi, managing director at Animmersion, said: “Working with a forward-thinking company like The Expanded Metal Company is a pleasure as its team sees the commercial opportunities to use technologies such as real time graphics to enhance their business offering and allow customers to see their entire range.

“They knew the limitation of the existing methods of visualisation and we extremely easy and helpful to work alongside to achieve an impactful representation of their products. Working on an image configurator of this sort is the perfect project for us here at Animmersion and we’re delighted to see the results.

“At Animmersion we like to help our clients unlock the potential of their digital assets. The Expanded Metal Company recognised this and embraced the suggestions on future uses of the assets we produced. We’re delighted to have worked with a company so close to us to achieve something truly ground-breaking.”

Philip Astley, managing director at The Expanded Metal Company said: “The team at Animmersion have been instrumental in helping us to both enhance the service we offer to our customers and strengthen our ability to market our products across the globe.

“It has been exciting to work alongside a fellow Teesside company which is blazing a trail in its sector and to see the results of a partnership between two North East innovators, where manufacturing heritage and decades of industrial experience have been combined with leading-edge digital expertise.”

It was previously part of the Expamet group of companies.

The Expanded Metal Company works closely with contractors and end users to create bespoke solutions for their projects, drawing on its extensive design and manufacturing expertise, and high-class production capabilities.

It stocks and supplies a wide range of high quality expanded metal mesh products and offers specialist capabilities in metal work, such as cutting, welding, drilling, punching, shearing and roll forming.

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