Pioneer Procurement is a manufacturing and injection moulding company established on the Riverside Park Industrial Estate in Middlesbrough. After more than twenty years providing high quality production services to many sectors, Pioneer decided to launch their own innovative product range, an animal containment, or “playpen for pets”.

Their MD, Liam Eley, explains that he was inspired to produce the product because he needed something to contain and organized his own chickens, and the available product – chicken wire – was inadequate.

The new product is a “ring fence for animals”, mainly for smaller domestic pets, but could also be for chickens and even children. A picket fence in plastic, a fence with a gate, the product will be sold in panels of 4m o 8m, 850mm high x 1m in length.

The product uses virgin high-strength polymer and recycled plastic.

The product is perfect for gardens and, since it’s totally portable, caravan holidays and other places where people want to take their pets but keep them under control. The pen can be fixed to grass and soil, but also works on decking.

Liam sought support from Innovate UK EDGE when his product was at prototype stage. Local IUK innovation specialist, Peter Dale, based at Teesside University, provided Pioneer with advice and access to funding and other support to help them with the development and launch of their new product.

This support includes access to £15,000 of service support from Innovate UK EDGE’s RTO/Catapult network, funding for moulds from the Tees Valley Business Growth fund and marketing support from Teesside University’s Growth Spark fund. Liam was also able to take advantage of IUK EDGE’s Design for Growth programme, which provides coaching in design thinking.

Regarding this support, Liam comments:

“It was very useful support. My design coach was very helpful in the whole process of defining and developing a brand for the new product. I would highly recommend this programme.”

If you’d like more information on how Innovate UK EDGE can help your business, contact Peter Dale at or 07385 390339