UK-made CT1 eco sealant tightens grip on adhesives market

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Produced by family firm C-TEC in Newry, Northern Ireland, CT1’s seven-jobs-in-one application seeks to cut waste and end the common site of half-used tubes littering building sites and sheds. 

Behind that lies its Tribrid bacteria-busting, no-shrinking or cracking technology. 

Recognition of the formulation’s multi-purpose durability has led to it being dubbed the ‘snag list eliminator’, by the building trade where it is renowned for saving builders’ extra expense rectifying repeat problems.

A deal with 470 Toolstation stores has recently been struck expanding distribution channels that also include Wickes and Travis Perkins.

And the sealant, which is highly rated by architects and designers, is also part of the fabric of attractions such as the memorial of Princess Diana in Kensington Palace gardens, the Bristol Wave inland surfing pool, Westfield Stratford shopping centre and the London Eye.

“We’re the most eco-compliant sealant on the market and rare – few are made in the UK,” says joint managing director Jimmy Walsh, who co-founded the company with wife Monica in 2004.

Last year business, which grew 50 per cent, has a team of 60 and is forecasting a £40 million turnover for its nine products as sales build too in Spain, Norway and Denmark.

Ahead of its time in forseeing the need for more environmentally friendly products in a sector stuck in rut, the company’s decision to make in the UK — an increasingly popular credential for customers — has also paid off. 

It has partnered with a domestic adhesive manufacturer, pooling resources for the new tooling needed for the mixes.

“How ingredients are combined is the key,” says Jimmy. “Before we saw the inferior, cheaper products being sold and there was a big chance to improve the quality. 

The harsh impact of chlorine has long been a big problem. Now we are developing a product that resists its impact. We think the industry will be very interested

Jimmy Walsh, C-TEC’s joint managing director

“We used to manufacture overseas, but with Brexit and supply chain upheavals in 2018 we changed strategy to stronger and greener, and we found the quality we needed.

“Our products do not have the problem of aggressive solvents, or react to light and temperature by clouding or turning yellow.  

“We invested a lot of time in research. Attitudes generally have changed enormously, now it really matters what materials are used. Health is very important.”  

“In homes, especially with children, asthma and allergy attacks from spores have become an increasing concern,” adds marketing manager Nicola Walsh. “Our products have been certified as reducing the risk of those. Now we are proud to flag that we make in the UK and there are obvious transport costs and environmental advantages.” 

CT1 is also a keen supporter of UK football and through a partnership with Eleven Sports Media the brand is being promoted to core customers in stadia featuring the Premier League, EFL and SPL in Scotland games.

Sister product Peel Tec, a fast paint remover, scooped decorating product of the year for 2021 and the business has a new disrupter in the works that could make even more waves in the spa and pool sector.

“The harsh impact of chlorine has long been a big problem,” says Jimmy, “now we are developing a product that resists its impact. We think the industry will be very interested.”

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