A WHITE goods maker is charting a transatlantic expansion as greater demand sows the seeds for growth, The Northern Echo can reveal.

Ebac says the evolving US market can provide fertile ground to bolster sales of its symbolic dehumidifiers and watercoolers, while it has also refused to rule out producing further household appliances.

The business has already experienced a spike in existing strong US demand for its industrial dehumidifiers following Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma, which battered the country in recent weeks.

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But bosses are now hoping they can replicate that success with the firm’s watercoolers, with the US regarded as the world’s largest market for the office staple, while they are seeking to reinforce its strong European presence with next generation models.

However, they are also keeping a close eye on the domestic scene, revealing a venture officially launched last year to become the only UK-based washing machine manufacturer has already seen thousands of machines fitted into customers’ properties.

Speaking yesterday to the Echo, John Elliott, founder and chairman of the business, which is based in Newton Aycliffe, County Durham, said things were going well.

Beginning by highlighting the response to its washing machine endeavour, which has seen the firm create capacity to make 200,000 every year, he said: “We are trying something that is quite ambitious and there is a lot of competition, but things have probably gone better than we expected.

“We are doing it in a controlled way, we aren’t going at it hell for leather.

“There is a tremendous appetite for British goods at the moment, but we always said we couldn’t hide behind the British flag with the washers and we haven’t.

“We have made a decent washer that does a decent job.

“We know how to make things here, and do it well, and I would say there would be around 3,000 washers in people’s homes already.”

However, Mr Elliott said Ebac, which is working with independent retailers to sell its washers, is eyeing further geographies, with its watercooler and dehumidifier prowess giving it a platform to do so.

Highlighting the recent demand caused by the hurricane season in the Caribbean, he said the company’s order book was primed to continue growing, with the US clamour for dehumidifiers much higher than the UK.

“Those products now at sea are already sold”, said Mr Elliott, referring to a latest batch of orders.

“The US market is now double the UK market, and the UK is buoyant, which tells you something.

“We are also aiming to expand our watercooler division over the next two years.

“France is our biggest market, but we are looking to get into the US.

“We have looked at the US several times over the years and never quite got there.

“But there seems to be a different market there now.”