International Leathers based in Killyleagh, Northern Ireland, have invested in machinery and created a number of new jobs on the back of one of the busiest times the company have seen.

The company, which specialise in producing fine quality garment leathers exclusively from UK lambskins, have employed an additional 15 workers. They have recently installed a new Erretre milling drum and have completed the purchase of other equipment, including an ironing machine and a shaving machine.

International Leathers have a skilled workforce who produce high quality clothing leathers which end up in some of the world’s leading fashion houses. The company attach a high priority to the development of new alternatives in fashion leathers, with new collections introduced each year and leading edge innovations.

Bill Shannon, the managing director, said that business doubled during 1998-99 and was up 20% in 2000. The business is expected to see a further increase in trade of similar proportions in 2001.

William McCulla, general manager, said: ‘The market is currently as strong as it has ever been. We are now more focused on marketing and product development and these are two key ingredients in our success.’

International Leathers (N.I.) are the UK’s largest lambskin tanner, producing a fine range of clothing leathers which are made exclusively from UK domestic lambskins.

At this year’s APLF they are showing their new range, including new colours, for spring/summer 2002. Main articles include Island burnished aniline and Girona burnished semi aniline for the classic leather look. The embossed range comprises new patterns such as Croco, Lizzard and Iona, together with more established leathers such as the Mourne article. The collection is completed with an attractive line of waxy nubucks and antique suedes.

In attendance on stand number D3/1 in Hall 2 will be Keith Kyle, Judith O’Keefe and Willian Shannon.