Factory expansion to create 45 jobs at Olympus Engineering
FORTY-FIVE jobs are set to be created as an engineering firm looks to expand.
Olympus Engineering plans to transform vacant neighbouring warehouses near its factory after running out of space at its existing Etruria base.
The company wants to use the units in Garner Street as workshops for specialist components.
Plans for the site – which have been submitted to Stoke-on-Trent City Council – also include offices, staff facilities and a car park.
The latest expansion comes after the company moved from College Road, in Hanley, to Garner Street in 2011.
Managing director Neil Blood, who founded the company in 2000, said: "The warehouses were empty and we have recently acquired them.
"We are full at the facility which we built a couple of years ago.
"We are up to capacity and we have opportunities with existing customers and new customers.
"Over the last four years the UK has become more cost competitive and we have some good skills in this country. It is also good for us being in Stoke-on-Trent with the transport links."
The warehouses were previously used by textile firm Slimma which called in administrators.
Since moving to Etruria the company – which makes components for blue-chip clients including JCB and Bentley – has also invested in an in-house training centre.
Mr Blood said: "We are looking for skilled people and have recently set up a training school.
"We will provide training as well but we need people with the right aptitude and relevant experience.
"We are struggling to recruit enough experienced people with the level of training that we require and we believe it is right to commit to this to help broaden the available skills base in Stoke-on-Trent." This year the firm – which employs 130 people – took on six apprentices and will also look to take on some graduates in the future.
Business leaders today welcomed Olympus Engineering's planned expansion.
Jane Gratton, membership and policy manager at North Staffordshire Chamber of Commerce, added: "Investment of this level, and the creation of skilled jobs, is welcome news.
"It provides further confirmation of the growing confidence in North Staffordshire as a centre of excellence for manufacturing and engineering."