News - 14 November 2014

Derby Enterprise Growth Fund Spearheads Engineering Recruitment Drive

A Derbyshire engineering company has launched a recruitment drive following the approval of expansion plans supported by Derby Enterprise Growth Fund (DEGF).

James Engineering, a family-owned company has been established in Meadow Lane Industrial Estate, Alfreton, since 1947.  It currently employs more than 60 staff and specialises in the design and manufacturer of steel fabrications and industrial chimneys. Previous local contracts include Toyota in Burnaston and the Westfield shopping centre in Derby.

Plans for an expanded factory have recently been approved by Amber Valley Borough Council and building work is due to start in the coming weeks with completion scheduled for mid 2015. 

In the meantime, James Engineering is starting its staff expansion plans – recruiting a total of 31 production, design, estimating and adminstration staff over the next two years.

The £1.2 million project has been supported with a £162,000 grant from the £20 million DEGF which is run by Derby City Council. DEGF is supported by the Government’s Regional Growth Fund. It aims to provide a catalyst for growth and job creation in businesses in the city and surrounding area through a mix of loans and grants.

Managing Director Chris James explained: “A key factor in our growth has been our successful accreditation under the new CE standards.  These were introduced in July and are already having a huge impact on the business.

“This accreditation is now a legal requirement for steel fabrication and we are one of the few companies in the UK to have the processes, training and procedures in place to adhere to the new quality framework.

“Our order book is therefore growing by the day and we need the additional production space to meet this demand. 

“The job creation opportunities are significant across the board and we need to ensure that we find the right people so are starting to recruit now ahead of the production facility expansion.

“We have concentrated on maintaining our workforce throughout the recession so do not have the cash reserves to fund all of this expansion.  Without the DEGF support, we would have struggled to have been so ambitious with our growth plans.”

Derby City Council Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Planning, Environment and Regeneration Cllr Martin Rawson chairs the DEGF panel of industrial and financial experts who consider business applications.

He said: “James Engineering’s expansion is excellent news for the local economy. They are proof that entrepreneurial spirit and predicting market changes pay dividends for a company’s bottom line.

“Our aim as a Council is to provide the catalyst for growth and support businesses in their ambitions to take advantage of opportunities that lead to job creation.”

For more information about job opportunities at James Engineering, please visit www.jamesengineering.co.uk

Applications for the Derby Enterprise Growth Fund continue to be accepted by Derby City Council.

To find out more visit: www.derby.gov.uk/degf .

Alternatively call 01332 641628 or email degf@derby.gov.uk .

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