Birmingham-based hydraulic manufacturing company, Hydraforce has been given the green light to expand after a £1.8m injection from the Regional Growth Fund.
The international company currently employs 280 people at its headquarters in Aston, Birmingham. However the recent fund injection means it will be able to take on an extra 200 new jobs when it settles on a new Birmingham site for its manufacturing operations when it moves its entire factory and staff in the summer of 2015.
The announcement follows a huge increase in demand for its engineering products and expertise from across the world. Last year Hydraforce had an annual turnover of about £49m.
The privately-owned manufacturer has manufacturing facilities in North America and Asia alongside its Birmingham factory, which designs and manufactures hydraulic equipment and assemblies for the fast-growing agricultural and construction industries across Europe and Asia.
UK managing director Peter Macdonald, said: “Overseas markets for our products and expertise are growing, HydraForce now exports over 80% of our manufactured goods and over the last year we have seen a substantial increase in demand. To meet future demand we must expand our Birmingham-based manufacturing operations which means moving to a larger site as we have outgrown our current St Stephens Street building at Aston.”
HydraForce, however, wants to stay close to its current site because it’s doesn’t want to lose staff, a key reason for the business’s resilience and growth, according to MacDonald. “Many of our staff have been with us for years, and we value their expertise very highly, so we don’t want to move out of the area.”
“Attracting the right people with the right skills at the right time is an on-going challenge for all employers, but we have a well-established apprenticeship programme and are currently working to establish a graduate placement scheme for the future.”
HydraForce was first established in Chicago, USA in 1985 and after realising the potential for business in the UK and Europe, the company’s UK base was set up three years later.