Supporting Tomlinson Hall lay the pipeline for future growth


16th June 2015

An award-winning major pump specialist has used Horizonworks’ expertise to help it reach new markets and give a key product a vibrant marketing makeover…

Tomlinson Hall & Co Ltd has won the UK Pump Distributor of the Year Award at the British Pump Industry Awards four times, most recently in April 2014. In January this year, it was named SME Of The Year in the 2015 NEPIC Awards, which celebrate the great and the good of NEPIC – the North East of England Process Industry Cluster. And the company was also a finalist in this year’s Teesside Business Awards, part of the North East Business Awards.

It’s fair to say, then, that the Billingham-based company is recognised across the UK and abroad for its expertise in the pump industry. Founded in 1919, the family-run firm is a renowned specialist in pump distribution and manufacture and is an approved global distributor for major industrial pump brands, including DEPA and ELRO.

But for all the recognition it has achieved, this is not a company which rests on its laurels or takes its success for granted. That is why, in 2013, it took the bold decision to rebrand and re-launch Liquivac, the innovative liquid ring vacuum pump it has developed and manufactures, and to re-energise its export strategy for the product.

Liquivac pumps can handle combinations of liquids, gases and fine solids and can perform a huge range of operations: they’re used across a wide range of industries, including desalination, chemical processing, water utilities, environmental management and food and drink processing.

From seawater extraction in the Middle East to land remediation in the North East, Liquivac can take
on many challenges.

Our work with Tomlinson Hall represents a partnership between two NEPIC members – Horizonworks first met the firm at a NEPIC ‘Meet The Members’ event and our relationship has developed fruitfully since then. We were commissioned to develop the new brand for Liquivac, and we have since worked hand in hand with the firm to create a broad range of marketing material to substantially boost its promotion of Liquivac and to support the product’s launch into international markets.

Taking a strategic approach to our work with Tomlinson Hall, we analysed the international market opportunities for Liquivac and developed a comprehensive understanding of the product and its benefits to organisations in specific target sectors. This led to the creation of key messages for Liquivac, tailored to specific (and diverse) audiences, which were fed into both the product’s new brand and the visual style and marketing material. The colourful new brandwork gave the product a more contemporary look, with the logo itself generating a feeling of ‘flow’ and movement.

We created a new website for Liquivac (, which was designed to appeal to end-users and potential distributors, plus a product brochure, sector-specific sales presentations on seawater extraction, food and drink processing, chemical processing, land remediation and utilities, as well as a technical manual and stationery.

The project also saw the Horizonworks team work alongside Dave Cockburn, senior lecturer in Games Art at Teesside University, who developed an animation of the pump, which vividly illustrates its operation and components. The animation, boasting the logo we have developed for Liquivac, has been used prominently on the website and in marketing material, such as presentations.

We also supported Tomlinson Hall in producing a winning entry for a market visit to Dubai, run in conjunction with UK Trade & Investment, which saw representatives of the firm promote Liquivac to end-users and potential distributors in the United Arab Emirates.

Liquivac has huge potential for use in many industrial applications in Dubai and the UAE as it can be applied in desalination – which provides most of Dubai’s fresh water – and in pumping water to aquariums and water features, which are popular in Dubai’s tourist and leisure developments. The pump’s flexibility means that it is ideal for use in the Middle East’s petrochemical related industries – for instance, in spill recovery, chemical processing and in pumping out bilge water from tankers.

Supporting Tomlinson Hall in implementing its export strategy, we produced an Arabic-language brochure and sales material to further enhance the range of marketing material used to promote Liquivac during the visit, and liaised with UK Trade & Investment on ensuring that our creative content would be effective for use in the UAE.

The new brand, website and marketing material has made a major impact in supporting Tomlinson Hall in promoting Liquivac to distributors and end-users, especially in the Middle East, and has helped the company open up new opportunities in this region.

Plus, the Arabic-language brochure has proved to be a major asset in demonstrating Tomlinson Hall’s intent to engage with potential customers in the Middle East.

As a full service, strategic marketing company, which specialises in translating complex technical information into messages which get our clients noticed ahead of their competitors, we have been able to bring a vast array of expertise to bear on the project – and we are proud to be helping Liquivac reach new markets in the UK and internationally.

And in addition to our brand development, design and digital work, Horizonworks has also helped Tomlinson Hall access funding for the Liquivac marketing campaign through the Investment For Growth Fund and the North East Business Support Fund – another example of how we support the businesses we work with.

Colin Simpson, business development director at Tomlinson Hall, sums up the project: “When we decided to re-brand and re-launch our Liquivac pump, we knew we had a great product with many USPs. What we didn’t have was a strategy and a direction for its future development.

“I proposed a total re-vamp and re-think to my colleagues on the board at Tomlinson Hall and was charged with the responsibility of making it happen.

“I had met some members of the Horizonworks team at the NEPIC Meet the Members event and at the same time I had met with the animation department from Teesside University and was very impressed with both. I decided then to offer the opportunity for both companies to meet and discuss the Liquivac project. I also had started to co-operate with UK Trade & Investment and invited them along to form a steering committee.

“Working with the team at Horizonworks has been a fantastic experience and they have really brought the Liquivac pump to life, with a range of striking creative work, which will form a major component of our export strategy.

“One couldn’t fail to be impressed with the proposal from Horizonworks, and the attention to detail from the onset and excellent communication has ensured there were no nasty surprises along the journey. It’s not only in delivering tangible products such as a brochure, business cards and website, it is the work behind the scenes in the support of all activities that also needs highlighting.

“Horizonworks’ awareness of the financial support that is available via external agencies has proven invaluable. We have also been supported throughout with information and ideas of marketing opportunities, not just press releases and adverts in trade journals, but entry into profile-building annual awards, such as the North East Business Awards and the NEPIC Awards.

“We were looking for like-minded, forward-thinking partners when we decided to re-brand and re-launch – and we found them.”

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