A MANUFACTURING firm in the region hopes to grow its turnover sixfold to £30m and create up to 50 jobs.

Apex Wiring Solutions is already a UK market leader in its field and plans to strengthen its position, as well as expand into Europe, over the next few years.

The County Durham company launched its flexible cabling system back in 2002. The system, which has been a huge success in America, replaces traditional wiring techniques and can reduce the time it takes to install cables into buildings by up to 70 per cent.

Demand for its products has seen Apex's turnover climb from £250,000 in its first year to more than £5m.

Production manager Jason Savage, who founded the business, said turnover could easily top £30m in the near future.

He said: "The business has grown considerably over the last five years and looking forward we are looking to expand significantly, particulally with the launch of our new eVo product range.

"It would not be unrealistic to say turnover could reach £30m and that would bring with it job creation."

Apex supplies assembled, fully-tested, armoured and unarmoured pluggable leads, which replace traditional wiring methods in buildings.

The system is already a multimillion pound market in the US, but has been slower to take off in the UK and Europe.

Apex has expanded its workforce year-on-year and now employs 50 staff at its factory on the Meadowfield Industrial Estate, near Durham City. Mr Savage said the figure could double as the business expands.

"With all the negative reports about the manufacturing sector struggling, I am proud of what Apex has achieved in the last five years," he said.

"We see huge potentials ahead of us. We are first going to strengthen our position in the UK and then try to get into the European market."

Alan Hall, the director of Engineering Employers' Federation (EEF) Northern, said he was "delighted" to hear of Apex's success.

"It sits alongside a wave of good business experience among manufacturing companies in the region," he said.

"The past 18 months have seen a good run for manufacturers - what we are seeing is a very robust picture."