Aussie owners give £3m boost to Scunthorpe foundry
The Australian owners of Scunthorpe's oldest foundry openly proclaim they are proud to belong to the town – by giving it a £3 million boost.
Bradken's pride in the 95-year-old business in Dawes Lane has been shown in an upgrading and expansion programme. The cash will open up a worldwide export market for the 115-strong workforce and the recruitment of extra employees.
Manufacturing manager Neil Bolton said the essential upgrading would be completed by next year and it was aimed to double output to 12,000 tonnes per annum within the next two to three years.
Mr Bolton: "It is good news for Scunthorpe. We will be moving to a worldwide market, making specialised machine parts for the mining industry. The investment will allow us to manufacture alloy steels for the mining industry.
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"In the past we have made goods for the power and cement markets. But this cash will put Scunthorpe in good stead for the future."
The cash boost for the town comes after Bradken announced a 15 per cent rise in pre-tax net profits to just over $100 million for the year ending in June. During the past year the company had also taken on an extra 1,100 employees worldwide to keep up with demand.
Bradken's managing director Brian Hodges said: "The underlying fundamentals of the business remain very strong with our monthly order intake and order book continuing to be at historical high levels.
"Bradken is holding a record order book with order intake likely to keep the first half production at full capacity. However we are still experiencing limited visibility beyond that due to the global economic uncertainty, with coal markets appearing to be disproportionately impacted."
The Scunthorpe foundry, which was built in 1917 on a 27-acre site in Dawes Lane, was taken over by the Australian firm in 2007 from Firth Rixson Castings as part of a reported £17-million-plus deal.
More jobs in the bag as crisp firm expands – see p23