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Early success for father and son; Tube-bending firm busy with exports.

Byline: COLIN LEWIS Business Editor

A FATHER-and-son team is exporting nearly two thirds of its output less than six months after starting up a tube-bending business in Nuneaton.

Ken Burnell, aged 60, and son Lee, aged 34, have won a contract to supply dog guards for vehicles made by Vauxhall, Ford Germany and Subaru.

This year they expect to produce 84,000 metres of steel tube - twice the length of the Channel Tunnel.

Ken was an engineering manager for 28 years, but always harboured an ambition to run his own business.

Lee, a former works manager, sold his home in Nuneaton to help set up the firm - LEB Engineering.

Ken said: "We set up on our own because we were discontent working for larger firms."

He said LEB Engineering's largest single investment had been in new CNC bending machinery which could shape any tube up to 40mm diameter.

"The key to our success has been ensuring a weekly manufacturing and delivery service," said Ken.

"Because we do all our cutting in-house, we can deliver a lot faster."

On the pair's new venture, Lee said: "We decided to give it a go and we can't believe we are achieving so much so quickly. "

The company has set up on the Centenary Business Centre, at Attleborough Fields.

Centre manager Marion Bradford said: "Our 756 units, some no bigger than a single garage, are ideal for start-ups.

"A number of enterprises working today wouldn't have been successful if this sort of accommodation had not been available."
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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Mar 24, 2003
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