Advanced Manufacturing Hub's first tenant officially opens new factory
The first manufacturer to locate to Birmingham’s Advanced Manufacturing Hub has officially opened its new 120,000 sq ft factory. HydraForce, which produces high performance electrohydraulic controls, turns over in excess of £50m. It completed and moved into the building in Aston last year, following £1.8m of investment from the Government’s Regional Growth Fund. The new facility is the largest single investment the company has ever made, and its move was an important boost to the economy of Birmingham and the city’s status as a European manufacturing and skills hub. The building was officially opened by HydraForce chairman John Pepe, who was visiting the UK from the group’s parent company in the United States. The new facility adds an additional 75,000 sq ft of manufacturing capacity, enabling the company to boost production of its electrohydraulic cartridge valves and other products for the European market. The three-story building also has production and testing areas on the ground floor, engineering and sales offices, and training areas on the first and second floors. Peter Macdonald, HydraForce’s managing director, said: “Our new Birmingham facility is helping us improve our speed to market throughout Europe, and into Turkey and India. More than 80% of the product we build in Birmingham is exported. This is a really good news story for British manufacturing.” Cllr John Clancy, leader, Birmingham City Council added: "The Advanced Manufacturing Hub vision is now becoming reality and it's exciting to see the HydraForce facility officially open for business. HydraForce is a big Birmingham success story creating high quality jobs and enhancing our city's growing reputation for advanced manufacturing." HydraForce, which celebrates 28 years in Birmingham this year, is the first tenant of the Advanced Manufacturing Hub, one of six economic zones identified by Birmingham City Council to drive Birmingham’s future growth ambitions.