Wednesday, May 10, 2017

News: Inward investment tops £1.9 billion

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The Sheffield City Region (SCR) is celebrating its best ever year for investment by foreign-owned companies, with growth up by a record 50% on 2016.

The nine districts across South Yorkshire, North Derbyshire and North Notts which comprise the SCR have seen a massive £1.9 billion pumped into the region, and more than 7,000 jobs created or safeguarded.

The figures, compiled by the SCR, represent the most successful year for foreign investment into the region since the SCR was established six years ago to drive economic growth and jobs.

Teams from the regeneration departments of the nine local authorities, such as RiDO, are supported by the region-wide SCR inward investment team to work together to attract foreign companies from overseas, and others already based in the UK looking to relocate and expand.

Rachel Clark, director of trade and investment for the SCR, said: "The region is seeing some very exciting success, and the culmination of a lot of hard partnership work with our local authority and business partners. These investments can often take years to come to fruition – but it's all worthwhile when the jobs and investment come in and create such fantastic economic growth."

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Headline-grabbing investments include Amazon's fourth warehouse in Doncaster – the largest number it has in any one place in the UK, and the announcement of the creation of high-value jobs by supercar manufacturer, McLaren Automotive, and US aero giant, Boeing.

Planning permission has recently been secured for a 75,000 sq ft development on the Advanced Manufacturing Park (AMP) in Rotherham that will enable McLaren to open a multimillion pound Composites Technology Centre.

The centre is set to create more than 200 jobs and will comprise approximately 150 production staff and 50 manufacturing support staff.

Rothbiz recently reported that the Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) has invested £25m to support growing local companies and inward investors of strategic significance. A £12m commitment was made to McLaren which has helped to secure a £50m project.

In the past year foreign companies have invested £500m in 49 projects, creating 2,800 jobs; UK-based foreign-owned companies invested in another 31 projects, creating a further 366 jobs.

In the SCR key sectors, advanced manufacturing and engineering accounted for over 30% of the year's investments. Other important areas, which include automotive, logistics and business, professional and financial services, represented around 60%.
Recent foreign investments relating to Rotherham include the £330m deal that saw ENGIE, a French headquartered multinational firm that specialises in electricity generation and renewable energy, acquire Keepmoat's Regeneration division which includes a significant operation in Rotherham.

Earlier in the period, one of Rotherham's manufacturing success stories, Pyronix, was acquired by China's Hikvision, the world's largest supplier of video surveillance products and solutions.

In August, the global aerospace and defence company, General Dynamics, took on new office space in Rotherham for its UK-based IT business and in November, Rotherham company, Envelopemaster, was taken over by the UK division of German-HQ'd VP Group.

Also during the period, GLASSOLUTIONS, part of French multinational Saint-Gobain announced that it is restructuring its contracting business that is centrally based in Rotherham, confirming an investment of £5m and a restructure of its operating model.

In property, a Joint Venture between Asian investors Fico Corporation and Singha Estates snapped up the Mercure Sheffield Parkway hotel in Rotherham for an undisclosed sum.

SCR Invest website

Images: Boeing / McLaren


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