Considering how big a role rubber plays in our everyday lives, it is perhaps surprising that the UK has very few specialist coloured rubber compounders – and one of them can be found in Northamptonshire.

B D Technical Polymer, based in Cooks Road on the Weldon North Industrial Estate in Corby, manufactures rubber compounds, calendered rubber, rubber blanks and more, bringing colour and versatility to rubber.

But despite their position as the go-to provider for coloured rubber compounds, it has not always been plain sailing for director Deepak Shah and his team.

At its peak the company, first formed in 1983, employed 14 people. That number is now down to seven, with a slump in demand for its high-volume products prompting a switch to a more specialised, low-volume approach.

Deepak said: “We are always innovating and we have had to completely remodel ourselves. None of what we did 30 years ago is done today, it’s a very different business. We have become far more specialised with the emphasis very much on quality rather than quantity.

B D Technical Polymer is one of the very few companies that can supply rubber compounds in all forms such as slabs, strips, calendered sheets or blanks. Rubber compounds are supplied for the moulding, extrusion, coated fabrics, footwear, roller covering, tank lining and general rubber goods industries.

With over 35 years of rubber compound mixing experience, B D Technical Polymer is able to understand and meet the requirements of modern industry.

Given the company’s long-standing success in its field, Deepak has often been involved in high level business programmes through the Technology Strategy Board and the Growth Accelerator.

When he heard about SEMLEP’s Peer Networks programme, he jumped at the chance to join and discuss a range of issues collaboratively with fellow business owners.

He said: “I’ve been through lots of different programmes but I’d never done anything like Peer Networks before, it was completely new to me and I really liked the idea of it. I found it particularly rewarding and it was a great insight to be able to sit down with other leaders and discuss our various problems and come up with ways to resolve them.

“When you’re managing a small team it can get lonely, you don’t have anyone to talk to so it’s great to be able to open up and talk things through. I’d thoroughly recommend Peer Networks to anyone involved in running a small business.”