Concrete Canvas which sells its highly innovative products to 40 countries around the world is increasing its export drive – making serious inroads into South America and plans to penetrate the lucrative Russian market.

The Pontypridd based company specialises in the production of rolls of fabric impregnated with a dry concrete mix. When sprayed with water, the fabric which has an impervious PVC membrane on one side, hardens within 24 hours to create a hard, fibre reinforced, concrete layer.

Sales of this geo-composite fabric are used in a range of areas from civil engineering projects to mining and clients include Network Rail, Environment Agency, Costain, Balfour Beatty,UK Coal and the National Grid.

Last year it secured a £2m deal selling the fabric to Chilean gold mines. It was used to line water channels that carry off glacial melt, preventing the run off entering the mine workings which could contaminate the water and cause flooding.

On a visit to the company’s HQ in Treforest this week Economy Minister heard their sales manager had just returned from a five-week visit to South America which resulted in several large orders as well as a number of new clients placing ‘test’ orders of smaller amounts for the first time.

Following a tour of the premises the Minister said she was pleased the company was benefiting from Welsh Government support for its international trade development.

“It’s excellent news to hear a high technology company working in one of our key sectors breaking into important new markets that have great potential,” said Edwina Hart.

“The Welsh Government is committed to supporting companies expand overseas sales and increase exports. Concrete Canvas has developed a unique product and I am delighted to hear of its on-going success.”

Company director Will Crawford said a visit to the Ugol Rossi Mining Show in Novokuznetsk, Russia in June enabled them to explore opportunities in the mining sector in Russia.

He said: “The visit was undertaken with the support of the Welsh Government and was very successful, it helped to introduce the company to the market and resulted in several productive meetings with potential clients and distributors that we are pursuing.”

Based on the Treforest Industrial Estate where it employs sixteen people, the company has seen turnover double year-on-year since 2008, with turnover tripling last year.

Exports now account for 85% of Concrete Canvas’ turnover, selling to 40 countries around the world.

The company also produces rapidly deployed Concrete Canvas shelters which are supplied to the UK Ministry of Defence as well as the Dutch, Singaporean and Australian military.