03 April 2012
Deputy Prime Minister sees investment in high value manufacturing for export
Crewe — Deputy Prime Minister Rt Hon Nick Clegg MP today visited Bentley Motors’ Pyms Lane headquarters in Crewe to see how the Government’s Regional Growth Fund (RGF) is helping the Company meet increasing demand for its cars by training new employees to the high levels of skill necessary to craft the high performance luxury cars for which the Brand is famous.
Bentley was the recipient of just under £5million of Regional Growth Fund in 2011 for two applications. The first sought to train and up-skill around 500 new workers at the Crewe plant. Since the announcement of the Grant in April 2011 around half this number have been recruited and trained. This £1.69m grant was followed by another successful RGF application for £3million in November 2011 to support the research and development of a new powertrain which will help the Company expand into new and existing markets overseas. Having completed due diligence, this project is now underway and is helping to safeguard around 200 engineering jobs at the Company’s R&D facility in Crewe.
The Deputy Prime Minister toured the historic Bentley plant and was able to see how the Company combines fine craftsmanship, engineering expertise and cutting-edge technology to craft some of the world’s finest and most exclusive cars such as the flagship Mulsanne and the new Continental GT. Mr Clegg also met a number of Bentley Associates who had already been recruited as a result of the RGF money as well as some members of Bentley’s well-respected Apprenticeship programme.
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said:
“It is fantastic to be announcing 500 new and 200 protected jobs here in Crewe today. Creating jobs and growth is my number one priority for Britain right now.
“For too long the UK economy has been too focused on the City of London. The Regional Growth Fund is helping companies across the country to grow their businesses and create jobs.”
Wolfgang Dürheimer, Bentley’s Chairman and Chief Executive, said:
“We are delighted to welcome the Deputy Prime Minister to Crewe. We are greatly encouraged by his comments that the manufacturing sector and companies like Bentley have a key role to play in developing a stronger and more balanced economy.
“The funding we have received from the Regional Growth Fund will help us in two key ways. First, it will help ensure that we have a skilled workforce we need to deliver our projects and remain globally competitive. Second, the R&D support enables us to work on a key engine development project that will help us expand in key markets.
“Bentley has had a fantastic start to 2012 and our sales show that there is huge global demand for high quality luxury automotive products manufactured in Crewe.”