Hunts Olympic involvement set to unlock new export markets

HOUGHTON exporter Le Mark is hoping its high-profile involvement in the Olympics opening ceremony – watched by four billion viewers around the world – will help to open up new markets in the Americas and Russia.

As reported exclusively in The Hunts Post last month, Le Mark played a vital role in the Danny Boyle ceremony by converting an original design into a printable format, producing and then installing the ‘reveal’ floor that featured prominently in the ‘pandemonium’ section of the ceremony.

The company, which started life making and selling gaffer tape and related products before moving into specialist performance flooring, is run by the chairman of the Huntingdonshire Manufacturers’ Association, Stuart Gibbons, who told The Hunts Post: “We shall exhibiting in Las Vegas at the Lighting Dimension International show in late October, targeting the American stadium and event markets.

“We will also be working with UK Trade and Investment and the relevant British embassies around the world, such as Russia for the Sochi 2014 winter Olympics, Brazil for the World Cup and, of course, the next Olympics in Rio.

“Wherever there are big outdoor events we now have the pedigree to be there providing full colour-printed floors.”

Sales director Linda Gibbons added: “We had been working on this major project for over four months but, along with all other ceremony suppliers, we were asked to ‘save the secret’ by Danny Boyle.

“We have also been collaborating with UK Trade & Investment to try to find overseas markets for our products and services, and we were hoping that, as the opening ceremony was the biggest shop window we could possibly ask for, it would bring us new business.”

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Liz Basing, regional director of UKTI East, said: “The Olympics is a once-in-a-generation opportunity for the UK to demonstrate its global capabilities and become a focus of interest for global business.

“For companies like Le Mark, which can actually point to their direct involvement in the ceremony, it could also be the start of some significant new business opportunities overseas.”

Le Mark was not the only Huntingdonshire company to have made significant contributions to the Olympics and Paralympics – such as Kimbolton Fireworks’ spectacular involvement in the ceremonies – and others that have waited for the end of the Paralympics last weekend before trumpeting their achievements.