Engineering group planning 150 jobs in the East Midlands

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A global engineering business is set to create up to 150 jobs and apprenticeships at a new £20 million East Midlands base.

Nèos International is creating a new group headquarters in a vacant factory at Westside Park, in Derby’s Raynesway.

The move will also create a home for the group’s new specialist composite facility, run by a subsidiary called Nèos Composites.

As well as creating new jobs Derby City Council said it would support hundreds more through indirect supply chain employment.

The empty site is the former home of Mulholland Composites, which collapsed due to cash flow problems in April, causing 45 redundancies.

Nèos makes composite materials that are used in aerospace, rail, automotive and other high value industries, many of which Derby is home to, with players like Toyota, Airbus, Alstom, Rolls-Royce residing in the city.

The move follows months of location scouting by Nèos International, with council leaders stepping in to support them with the purpose-built composites manufacturing and development facility.

Carl Roberts, Nèos International CEO said that Derby’s strong engineering background was a key pull to the city.

He said: “Derby has long been heralded as an engineering and manufacturing powerhouse – from early developments in steel, to the latest in safety critical systems for aerospace, Derby has a rich history in delivering engineering excellence.

“The city itself is famous for the aerospace and rail heritage, but this belies the scope of opportunity that such a well-located city can offer.

“Many of our customers and the sectors we serve are represented within Derby and Derbyshire from aerospace to automotive, and from nuclear to infrastructure.

“By assimilating several of our business units together in one facility, we expect to leverage the very best of what the city has to offer in terms of the workforce and the supply chain.”

With expertise in F1, motorsport, space, defence, aerospace and rail, Nèos hopes to grow its customer base across multiple industries, and expects to generate an annual revenue of £20 million from the facility within the next two years.

Paul Simpson, chief executive of Derby City Council said that Nèos’ move built on the city’s three key pillars for economic recovery – maintaining confidence, diversification and decarbonisation – and would be welcomed by many of the organisations already in the city.

He said: “For the city, and indeed the Council, the move fits perfectly with our future ambitions; Nèos’ focus on innovation, and their diverse market specialism ticks key boxes in our economic recovery strategy.

“Their background in aerospace, automotive, composite and rail mean a number of organisations already operating in Derby will benefit, so we’re excited to see the positive implications for our local supply chain.”

Tim Wybrow, managing director of Nèos Composites said the group was looking forward to working with schools and colleges in the city to create technical apprenticeships.

He said: “By leveraging the long and proud engineering history of Derby, we expect to grow our group quickly in terms of employees and projects, generating long term, high quality employment, as well as boosting the supply chains and collaborative opportunities available within the city.

“Across our business units today, we recognise the benefit of supporting young people taking their first steps into the world of work.

“From work experience to apprenticeships and vocational training, we truly believe in investing in people.

“With the support of Derby City Council, we will develop a technical apprenticeship program to nurture the next generation, through engagement with local schools and colleges.”

Gareth O’Donovan, head of economic growth at Derby City Council, said: “We’ve been really impressed with the Nèos senior management team and the business they have built to-date.

“They have big growth ambitions and we’re really pleased that they’ve chosen Derby as their new national HQ.

“This move brings good quality, sustainable jobs and apprenticeships to the city, which ultimately means income and opportunity for our people and their families.

“As an authority we are able and willing to support businesses to set up, grow or move here. Derby has a lot to offer, and being able to attract businesses of Nèos’ calibre is testament to the world-leading engineering capabilities that we already have in the city.

“I’m delighted we’ve been able to support Nèos, and we look forward to working with them.”
Tom PegdenLeicester Mercury business editor