Electronics industry best factory sponsored by TR Fastenings; Best factory in the Midlands sponsored by Commission for the New Towns.
You really have to be nimble in the computer business. Just as computers themselves have come down in size, so, willy-nilly, have those companies in the industry that have been slow to adjust to the change. But while IBM and Digital Equipment have been laying-off employees in their tens of thousands, Design to Distribution - the manufacturing arm of Britain's ICL - has been prospering and expanding.
The name Design to Distribution - usually shortened to D2D, which is the corporate logo - proclaims the organisation's purpose: to provide a comprehensive subcontract service - extending all the way from product design through to physical distribution of finished computers. But while it's fair to suppose that ICL itself should take the whole package, other customers are naturally free to pick and choose. Numbers of computer manufacturers opt to buy-in printed circuit boards, for example. ICL's former plant at Kidsgrove, near Stoke-on-Trent - this year's Factory of the Year - is where D2D produces circuit boards.