New jobs as four companies receive support from Regional Growth Fund

Posted on 24 Jan 2012

Bentley Motors, e2v Technologies, Halifax Rack and Screw Cutting and Nifco UK have signed contracts to receive £7.9 million in government support from Round Two of the Regional Growth Fund (RGF).

Business Secretary Vince Cable announced the approved funding at a regional lobby meeting at Westminster on Monday.

The funding will help create jobs, improve skills and invest in new equipment.

The four companies, all manufacturers, submitted applications for the funding in April 2011. Having been approved provisionally, they have now passed due diligence, negotiated their terms and signed contracts for the funds.

A spokesperson for the RGF at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) said that bidding for the Round 2 of the first £1.4bn tranche of funding was particularly popular with manufacturing companies.

Bidding for the second main tranche of the RGF, worth £1 billion, will open in February. BIS will promote the fund through regional partners such as Local Enterprise Partnerships, business groups and a nationwide roadshow.

The four companies are:

Bentley Motors in Crewe will receive £1.69 million to improve the skills of existing employees and enable them to take on significant additional staff to support increased production. The total project cost is more than £4.5 million.

Nifco UK in Stockton on Tees, which will use £1.65 million of RGF support towards an £11 million project to equip a new factory and help the company move into the market for electric vehicle batteries. This is expected to create 128 new jobs and safeguard 158 existing jobs.

e2v Technologies in Chelmsford, Essex, will use £6.25 million of RGF support to boost its work developing microwave processing systems for a range of industrial applications in resource and energy intensive sectors. This is part of £29.4 million overall investment that is expected to create 336 new jobs at e2v and in its supply chain.

Halifax Rack and Screw Cutting Co in Halifax is the first project from round two of the fund to receive its funding and forms part of the Leeds City Region local enterprise partnership package. It will receive £200,000 towards a £1.5 million project to support modernisation of their production facilities to manufacture precision products for the construction, engineering, offshore and energy sectors. It will create 12 new jobs and safeguard seven jobs.

“The Regional Growth Fund is already helping the economy grow in every region and across a range of industries,” Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said. “The 641 jobs announced today is more good news for people in Teesside, Crewe, Essex and Halifax.”

e2v in Chelmsford will use the £6.25 million of RGF support to invest in current design, manufacturing and test capabilities, as well as investment in its ProWave microwave processing systems for a range of industrial applications in resource and energy intensive sectors.

The ProWave systems provide a cleaner and more efficient technology for the processing of bulk materials. This is part of £29.4 million total investment expected to create 336 new jobs at e2v and within its supply chain.

Chief executive of e2v Keith Attwood said “This project is an integral part of our strategic plan for growth and a result of our close working relationship with our research partner, the University of Nottingham. Today’s news is a part of a process which began with the initial grant award announcements last April and today confirms that we can start to draw funds.”

He added, “We expect that more than 100 jobs will be created here at e2v by 2014, together with additional jobs in our supply chain. This grant is good news for us and good news for the UK’s export figures and technology leadership”.